How I Take Care of Myself as a Busy Mom of Two

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Girl mom and writer sharing my journey of cultivating inner peace & finding moments of joy in the day-to-day. Passionate about empowering women to see and believe in their greatness.

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Hi, I'm Ilse

Society has a way of glorifying the selfless mother. Engrained in me is the idea that good mothers give up everything for their children. And I know very well where this comes from; I grew up surrounded by selfless mothers who poured into their children all they had and left little for themselves. I am in awe of these women and all they did and endured, and I also realize now, the major lack of support and the heavy mental and physical load they carried.

Because of this, I struggled immensely in my early days of motherhood with feelings of not doing or being enough.

And I’ll be honest, I find myself defaulting to that narrative often.

But what I’m proud of today, is that I’m also able to look back and see a woman doing her best and not giving herself any grace.

It took me close to five years since the day I found out I was pregnant with my first child to understand being a “good” mother is not only about taking care of your baby, it’s about taking care of yourself too. And trust me, I know all about not having the resources, that illusive “village” everyone talks about, or the energy for any “self-care.”

I now understand I am worthy of care and “mothering” only how society expects me to only robs me of my joy in the greatest role of my life.

So today, I want to share how I take care of myself as a busy mom of two. I share these to remind you that even after becoming a mother, you are worthy of prioritizing your wants and needs.

Take breaks

These days, I embrace rest and relaxation like no other. I may or may not be really into JOMO (joy of missing out). Lol.. In all seriousness, I have stopped the “nap time hustle” mentality. If there’s work to be done around the house, I am able to include the girls in helping or I set them up with an activity so I can get a little work done. Rest doesn’t necessarily mean a nap when they nap, but it does look different every day. Rest from social media, a moment outside to take a pause and reflect, or perhaps journaling. Every little bit goes a long way.

Stopped eating my children’s leftovers as meals

Their leftover mac n cheese is not an option anymore. I’m embarrassed to recall how many times my lunch consisted of the leftover sandwich and fruit on my kids plate.. all because I couldn’t justify spending a little more time on cooking something for myself and then sitting down to enjoy it. Writing that actually makes me a little sentiment. These days, I’m much more intentional about the food we consume and everyone eats the same dish. It’s been a much healthier approach to meal times and we are back on track to viewing food as fuel for our bodies, not just a means to an end.

Started asking for help

I still struggle with this concept but I’m much more mindful about delegating tasks others can do. I work on not having to do everything myself (because otherwise it won’t be done correctly) every single day and when I’m able to release control, I notice I am much happier and present in my personal tasks and the people around me. Not everything is meant for me to do.

Prioritizing sleep and moving my body

I could definitely improve in the area of quality sleep but moving my body at least 4-5 times a week is a non-negotiable. Sleep is truly the foundation for a healthy body and mind and since having the girls, it’s been a struggle to get back on track. I’ve romanticized my nighttime routine to help with this (should I do a detailed post on everything I do?) and it’s helped so much. I will say magnesium at night has been a game-changer. This is the one I’m currently using and loving.

When it comes to working out, I will either do long walks, run, do a ride on my peloton, or a barre class. It really just depends on how I’m feeling and how much time I have on any given day. I’ve also had to become an early morning work-out girlie (I know.. never in a million years did I think that would be me) but when you choose to make your mental and physical health a priority, there’s going to be trade-offs.

Making time for friends

Maintaining and nourishing adult friendships has got to be one of the more difficult things. I admit, I’m not the best at texting or making plans but again, I’ve tried to be more intentional with this because the right people (the people that uplift, inspire, and make you laugh) are always worth it. Granted, these plans are made months in advance now, but it really makes them feel special and purposeful.

Say no, often.

One of the things having children has really helped me do is learn to prioritize what matters most and how much energy I have to give to those things and people. It’s tough going from a people-pleaser to setting boundaries, but I’ve come to realize my relationship with my children suffers the most when I’m operating from burnout. It’s okay to say “no” and it’s okay to disappoint the people who have come to heavily rely on you for things that really shouldn’t be on your plate.

*There is something to be said about doing things that are for the greater good. Let’s call them “community builders” aka things that take time and energy like volunteering our time, etc. It may not necessarily spark the greatest joy or be convenient but it’s for something bigger than us. In these situations, my approach is to take inventory of my mental state and how much I have to give. I try to focus on people and events I’m drawn to so that there is no resentment after the activity is done. Different seasons call for difference capabilities within us and it’s important to do these acts of service from a place of ownership for that choice instead of guilt.

Share below how you take care of yourself as a mom and if any of the things I mentioned resonated with you?

Until my next post!

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I'm Ilse Inzunza. A writer and mom sharing my journey of cultivating inner peace & finding moments of beauty and joy in the day-to-day. 

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