There’s nothing wrong with a little self-love on your big day; you’ve earned it!
Being a Mom is ridiculously hard work. There’s the physical burden of pregnancy, birth, and caring for the child, the emotional work of keeping the family happy, loving, and functional, the financial side of things, plus the mental aspect of remembering all the things that need to get to keep the household running. Just listing it all off is exhausting!
So with all this in mind, why not create a ritual for yourself to celebrate your achievements and hard work over the years.
Make Space for Just You
Before you plan your ritual, it’s important to keep a couple of things in mind. Moms are the go-to for just about everything in the house, so asking for a few hours to yourself without kids or responsibilities is not a sin. Arrange a sitter, a playdate (with another dad), or have the husband take the kids out while you do what you want to do. Having a still, quiet house will help you concentrate on relaxing and put a stop to unwanted interruptions.
If you’re not sure where to send your kids for a couple of hours, you may want to check out your local library. They have tons of activities and workshops to keep your children busy and give you a moment’s peace.
Once you have the house to yourself, it’s time to start your ritual.
Bathe in Minerals
A hot bath is an excellent way to relish in some time for yourself, but to take it to the next level, try a mineral bath with Epsom salts. They help reduce inflammation as well as soothe aches and pains. Add in a few drops of an essential oil like lavender, and you have a full-body tonic for easing stress. Turn off the lights and lay a towel over your eyes, then play some calming music like The Spa Channel on Spotify, then enjoy a full hour of soaking to yourself.
Make a list of all the amazing things you did this year for your household. Be sure to include ways that you helped your family (running the kids to school, paying off loans, cleaning out the closets, throwing an amazing birthday party), and your personal achievements (completing courses, getting healthier, improving your cooking skills, taking up a new hobby). You can reference this list whenever you’re in the dumps and need a lift.
Once you’ve made the list, throw together your favorite mocktail and toast yourself, you’ve earned it.
Create a Vision Board
It may sound a little hokey, but trust us when we say that looking through magazines and cutting, pasting, and sketching out the life you want to lead is not only therapeutic but it’s beneficial to your health and future.
Vision boards provide you with a daily visual reminder of your dreams and goals. They help you focus on your values and prevent distractions from things that aren’t in line with your goals. The reason that vision boards work so well is that you visually see them every day, reminding you of where you want to be.
Not sure how to get started? Here’s a great article from Oprah on how to make your own vision board.
Once you’ve got your personal Mother’s Day ritual set up, your family will surely want to celebrate you as well. Here are a few tips to make sure your special day is one for the books (in a good way).
Voice your choice
Do you have a hard time taking up space? Do you defer to what others want just to keep the peace? Do you want to be seen and loved but feel forgotten and dismissed? Then this pointer is for you.
If your family insists on taking you out but you’re just not that into it, let your choice be known. If you feel like the whole brunch thing is expensive and overdone, say so. If you’d rather stay home and watch a movie as a family, it’s important to express it.
Alternatively, sharing a special desire is helpful if you often get overlooked around this time of year. Don’t go vague here: be specific. “I want to have a picnic with the tuna salad from my favorite deli and a red-velvet, gluten-free cupcake.”
Women who have a hard time voicing their wants and needs often defer to what others want to do for them. They also tend to default to “whatever is easiest” and then harbor resentment when they feel forgotten or end up with a half-assed attempt at a gift. Don’t let this be you, take control of the situation and make sure it’s an enjoyable experience for everyone.
What Not to Do on Mother’s Day
- Expect others to read your mind.
- Take care of everyone else and their needs.
- Forget to celebrate yourself.
- Act like it’s just another day.
- Let your inner critic tell you how not-enough of a mom you are.
- Forget to set boundaries in advance so you can have YOU time.
- Get up early.
Now with all that in mind, go forth and have the most wonderful, well-earned Mother’s Day. Here’s to you!