Motherhood is such a beautiful experience. It really is, but it becomes difficult at times to love the role when its responsibilities can often leave you too drained to give love to the work you’re passionate about. I tell no lies, and if a Mother tells you she never struggles between the polarity of her desire to nurture her family and her desire to publicly serve, she’s lying.
In my case, this public servanthood comes in the form of writing.
And you know what?
Everything about being a writer gives me joy. From those moments when ideas come out of nowhere to the process of splattering words all over and watching alchemy take place, to even the painstaking process of editing, the art of storytelling is my jam.
But guess what?
My kids are also my jam. Building on the home my husband and I have worked to create for them, over the last four years has taken a lot of hard work, late nights, and worthy sacrifices.
So how on earth do I take care of myself in the midst of managing my blessings and gifts?
Well, in a few ways.
1. Meditation: Whether it’s engaging in prayer, five minutes of restorative yoga, or picking one biblical verse or passage to focus on for the day, I cannot handle any of my responsibilities without this first version of checking in with my emotional temperature. I may not be able to consistently wake up at 5 a.m. to do it, but I’m consistent with what I’m doing. I think this is key, especially for Mom’s who can get discouraged if they’re not able to meet a certain timeline every day. While some might say we lack discipline, I say Mom’s have an inexplicable need for flexibility. Did I mention my children are 3 and 2-years-old? And my second child is just now being weaned from breastfeeding? Meditation keeps me grounded and grace-filled.
2. Essential Oils: As a counselor, I know the importance of managing emotional health, but as a Mother, it’s imperative. The success of my family depends on it. To keep my nervous system supported through all seasons- from potty training to promoting my work, I’ve used oils to nourish my system in a way that is simple, effective since ancient of days, and accessible. With all that’s going on, I don’t have time to tend to an actual apothecary as my grandmother and grandaunt would. Essential oils, applied topically and used aromatically in the diffuser has worked wonders on my post partum trauma as well. Some oils which have been instrumental are Roman Chamomile to help affirm my purpose as a writer and Mother. Bergamot for supporting my will to get ALL of the things done; it’s like a kiss to my solar plexus!! Without Cypress or Peppermint, which support emotional flexibility and reset from pessimism, meltdowns would be plenty, especially when I’m in a zone to write and something unexpected threatens to derail me, like my youngest trying to flush crayons down the toilet!!
3. Journaling: Sometimes its quick notes on my phone while in the market or a whole letter to myself with reflective questions in my favorite leather-bound journal. Journaling has been instrumental to my growth in both areas of my life. My pages are an endless dumping ground for creativity where I don’t lose track of serendipitous ideas and they don’t drive me nuts if they’re not getting accomplished fast enough. I’m able to check in on ideas and track their growth or sometimes ask myself if they really still matter. It’s also just a great way to keep myself accountable, for better or for overwhelmed.
What are some of the ways you engage in self-care as a writer, while momming-so-hard?
Written By: Laura Eustache Zamor