Friday, July 12, 2013

Time Well Spent

We spent last weekend out of town for a couple days on a mini vacation, taking the boys to the Louisville Slugger factory, then heading back up to Cincy for the zoo and a Reds game. Britt was out of town with her mom so she wasn't able to come, but I'm learning that going with the flow is a necessity when everyone is going in different directions. Trying to hold all that together is hopeless as herding cats some days, and with a family and a business the glory days of my early 20's seem far away... Goodbye Gulf Shores girls' trips. Much as I love my family I am a little sad to see those days go. But the boys were super pumped about going and it made me happy to see and hear how excited they were to get to do something that I consider so simple.

I spent several hours on the day before our trip running around like a mad-woman trying to get everyone packed and ready to go. There's nothing simple about traveling with this many people, even if only for a long weekend. Extra clothes, snacks for the kids, plenty of activities to occupy them on the drive down (because otherwise Braylon, aka the question man, will drive you bat shit crazy), not to mention planning the trip and getting a hotel, because who doesn't love waiting til the last minute to do these things?! At any rate we pulled it all together and nothing irreplaceable was forgotten.


Becoming a parent and partner to a much larger family has presented me with a lot of new challenges. When it was just Connor and me things were still relatively simple. He was of course first priority, but that didn't make it tough to still do the things I needed/wanted to. Now it's a whole other ball game. The problematic thing about a growing family and more complicated life is that we tend to put ourselves on the back burner and then use our added responsibilities as an excuse to stop taking care of ourselves. Or at least that's what I did, and I think it's a prevalent story in society. Forgoing our duty to ourselves to be all that we can be for everyone else--hello folks, we're mothers not martyrs! Fortunately I've been down the ugly road of zero self-care once before and am unwilling to do it again, so I pulled myself out of that tailspin before things got out of control.

It made me wonder why we sacrifice self-care as a legitimate trade off for being a parent/partner, telling ourselves it's ok to be unhealthy or skip out on exercise because we just don't have time--too busy taking care of everyone else. Newsflash: if you don't take care of yourself first, you're not going to be around to take care of anyone. I may not have been moving into the obesity limelight again, but I can tell you my attitude sucked far worse than it already does when I was dipping out on the gym and slamming pizza and ice cream on the regular. At first I found myself feeling guilty for taking that time away every day to go to the gym, but I realize it is absolutely necessary if I want to be the best version of myself for everyone else, and damnit it makes me feel good.

An hour or so a day at the gym isn't that much in the grand scheme of things, and having friends that I can work out with and talk to about something other than baseball, WWE, or farts is time well spent in my book. Forking out a little more on fresh foods and produce at the grocery store rather than boxed bullshit or mediocre restaurant food every night is worth the payoff. If my kids see me making time to take care of myself (even if that means I have to get up ungodly early), odds are they're going to do the same one day because that's how they assume it should be. Make yourself a priority... taking care of your family isn't a justifiable excuse for not taking care of yourself.

(And if you come to Crossfit, you can buy your kid sweet shirts like this one)

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