As a SAHM, I feel guilty desiring "Me Time". My job is to run the household, train up and teach the children, clean, cook, and nurture. Give, give and give all of me. It isn't very different from other professions and my little list just scratches the surface of what a SAHM does.
I'd be lying if I didn't admit I get burnt out every once in a while. The difference is I don't get sick days, vacation days, or personal days. The show must go on, this is my circus and all three rings of it. So, began the pursuit of striking a balance.
The first thing I did was find a hobby. You may laugh, but I needed an outlet. Something to do that was mine. My heart is writing, and I kept coming back to blogging. It is fun, it feeds my soul to write, it is my thing. I've kept my eyes and ears open and added volunteer work as another hobby I enjoy. Pursuing hobbies and finding one(s) that fills your soul with joy is paramount to me time. What is your 'thing'?
The next thing I did was find a social outing only I went to. I do enjoy socializing with my husband. We are both extroverts, but I am the extra-extrovert of the two of us. I like to experience things with him and share moments and memories. Then I had to remember that he gets up and goes to his job and has adult conversations five days a week without me, and it is okay for me to spend a little time with adults, too. I chose the neighborhood Bunco group to join. It was perfect for me because it is a ladies only event, once a month on the same day each month. Easy-peasy planning and allowed me a breather from diapers, feeding and the negotiations of motherhood. I was careful to pick a social outing that wouldn't compromise my marriage. Each marriage is different with different boundaries. Keep in mind what is best for your marriage when deciding on your social outing of choice.
Then, we started a dinner party club. Sounds so adult of us, but it is simply four couples that get together four times a year. We divide the hosting and dinner duties equally. We have an opportunity to schedule time together with friends who we might have otherwise lost touch. What is special about our group is that we all lead very different lives and are in different seasons. It gives us all a break from our day to day routines and a chance to connect, listen and grow with people we like to be around. Classic dinner parties, murder mystery parties, and game-centric dinner parties are some of what we've done together.
The final thing I've done is find my tribe. I find myself drawn to social situations that lead me to a tribe of women. Finding a tribe is not an easy thing. It doesn't happen overnight, and it has ebbs and flows and sometimes people stick like spaghetti on the wall and others are only for a season. The people in your tribe don't have to be in each other's tribe, but it consists of a select group of women who you can count on, call on and carry on with. These are the judgment-free zone friends. I suggest filling your tribe with women who have been where you are or might be embarking on the season you are down in the trenches of living or even better yet someone whose life looks totally different than yours. This is how we grow. This is how we develop and savor our me time.
Try and add one or all these suggestions to your life to reclaim the me time you've been missing. Me time is about your identity and your feelings. It can be as simple as an afternoon at the salon or the ideas listed above to find me time. The most important thing is to feed yourself and then you can do the work of giving to those around you, especially the ones who make you a SAHM.