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You Know You’re A Mommy When…by Christine Lee-McNaughton

16 November 2010 15 Comments

photo from newparent.com

Lately, I find that the tiniest, most trivial and insignificant things get me excited. For example, getting my hair cut and styled is something most women do on a regular basis, but this little detail is a splurge for me now. Why? Well, I am rarely ever without my daughter when I’m not teaching and I almost never do things for myself or buy things for myself.

I know, I know. A happy Mom is a healthy Mom, la dee da dee da. Yes, I realize that in order for us to take care of our families, we need to first take care of ourselves. I’ve spoken to many moms out there who make time for themselves and get their manicures, pedicures, hair cuts/styles/colours/

highlights. How though? How on earth do they manage to squeeze that all in? I have trouble jumping out of bed, getting ready, getting Little  One ready, teaching grammar all day, rushing back home to cook supper, get everything done and be in bed at a decent hour.

I used to be really spontaneous, carefree, free-spirited, and adventurous. I used to globe-trot and jet-set all over the world. Before I turned 25, I had already been to eleven countries, thirteen U.S. states, and four Canadian provinces. Now, I’m lucky if I get out of Ontario once or twice a year! A lot has to do with the responsibilities of being an adult with a family, but it also has to do with the not having the time or energy to do all those things anymore. We do take Little One on road trips and she goes everywhere with us. It’s not the same as just hopping on a plane to the Dominican Republic for a week though.

The one thing I’ve started doing for myself has been going for speed walks with a good friend of mine. With toddlers in tow, we march up and down the highway to get some exercise and some “us” time.

Speaking of “us” time, I don’t even remember when Hubby and I had our last date. Little One is 22 months old, so…I guess our last date would have been over two years ago! Whoa! Okay, unless you count that funeral we went to sans child. That wasn’t exactly a date though. We are both well aware that we need to schedule in some “date nights” and “us time”. Hopefully sometime in the near future? It just seems like life is too busy for that right now, but we are aware that the little everyday things are very important.

I know that in order to keep the fire burning, date nights are important. Happy, healthy, balanced relationships (be it mother-child, husband-wife, sister, friend, etc), we need to take time and do things for ourselves. We all know this. It’s about time we did something about it.

A very good friend once told me that “Just once a month” is all it takes to recharge or refresh one’s batteries. She told me to treat myself to something nice “just once a month…and every month”. Make time for yourself and make time for yourself AND your husband. Being a Mom is part of our lives. It isn’t the only part of our lives.

Christine is a blogger and member of the BornFree Mom Panel.

How many of you pamper yourselves every now and then? How many of you go on date nights with your significant other? Where do you go? What do you do?

One person who comments will be entered to win a Twin Pack of  BornFree Clear Button Pacifiers!

The winner is Sarah with the email address: dsj******@live.ca


  • Leslie McCurrach said:

    Although my daughter is only 8 weeks old, my husband and I have managed two dinner dates sans baby. Having relatives nearby sure helps! Even so, I find it a little hard to relax because she’s still so young. Also, these days, even watching a movie on the couch feels like a date!

  • Sarah said:

    My hubby and I have 2 children. One 3 and one 8 months. We don’t really go out on date nights, but we do take the time to make sure the kids are in bed on time and spend the evenings together. Whether its cuddling on the couch and watching a movie or if it’s just talking we love the time spent together. Every once in a while we find the time to go out for dinner too without the kids and that sure is a treat!!
    I don’t really pamper myself with manicures or pedicures or anything like that…. but there is something I love to do and I see it as ‘pampering’ myself. I crochet hats and once a month sell them at mom2mom sales. Its alot of fun and I do it with 2 of my girlfriends and to me, thats good enough!!! Plus, while I’m out having my fun, I’m also making some extra money!

  • leslie said:

    Now that I have 3 girls. One is almost 5 the other 2 and the last one is 1. I take time for myself. Whether it is going for a pedicure once in awhile or visiting with friends. My husband and I take turns going out. It isnt the same as date night. Atleast we both get out once in awhile. I feel everyone should once in awhile. It really is good for the whole family I think. The children need to know and see mommy go out and know she will come back.

    This weekend after 5 years since our honeymoon will mark my very first time away from the kids. I will be going shopping in the states with girlfriends.

    I do know I will miss them and them me, but I know these alone times are few and far between. I will have my time and Daddy will enjoy his time with the girls all to himself. In the end it will all work out :)

  • C said:

    Leslie McCurrach:
    Congrats on the arrival of your little one! I almost forget what it was like when mine was 8 weeks old! So sweet! I had to laugh at the “Also, these days, even watching a movie on the couch feels like a date!” :) That’s how I sometimes feel!

    Very cool that you crochet hats for the mom2mom sales!

    “The children need to know and see mommy go out and know she will come back.” That is BRILLIANT, and so true! Kids do need to learn that Mommy *will* come back. I’ve *just* started teaching again (2 months ago) and it was so hard for me at first. Surprisingly (or not surprisingly!), we all survived. Little One knows that this is what happens and that at the end of the afternoon she gets to see Mommy again.

    Have a great time shopping in the States with your girlfriends! :)

  • Michelle Proulx said:

    I am a mother of 2, my daughter is 3.5 and my son is 13 months. It seems that once you become a mother you put all others before you..you make sure the kids are fed ( even if you forget to eat yourself), clean ( I’m luck if I get a shower in every other day)..but that doesn’t seem to matter as long the kids are happy. So when I am able to steal a few mins I often have a soak in the tub ( once the kids are in bed)….

    The last time that my hubby and I got away without the kids in tow we had to go to Sudbury for an apointment..but we ended up staying over night and going to a movie ( which we have not dome in over 1 year)..we make to most of our time together ..no matter what the cercumstanses are!!

  • Amanda O mom of five said:

    Being a mom of five can be very busy. especially during the school week. I try and go to a friends house once the baby is down for the night usually around 8:30pm. we sit ans chat, have coffee and not have to worry about the kids bugging us.

    As for couple time, its not very often we do get a chance to get away usually only for our staff christmas party or our wedding anniversary. but now that the hot tub will be running soon. we can sit out there and relax while spending time together at home were we love to be most.

  • Kristi said:

    I laughed when you mentioned getting your hair done b/c I just got my hair blonde again last weekend after many, many months of my roots showing and I was so giddgy to get it done b/c it was just “me time”!! I know I need more of it but lots of time it’s the money situations that can prevent my hubby & I from getting out just together. We did have back to back concerts Sept 30 & Oct 1 that we went to together and it was fantastic b/c I think that was the first time we went out w/o our son (who just turned 1 yesterday). But, we need to try to find more time for ourselves and together. I like to do the grocery shopping by myself b/c believe it or not, it actually relaxes me…not as much as going shopping at the mall does but I find doing that with my son kinda fun too (as long as he’s had a nap then I’m good to go!!).

  • Lisa M. said:

    Since I had Isaiah at the beginning of March, I’ve had my hair cut twice (once in June and once just last week), and I treated myself to one pedicure. My husband is in school and mat leave doesn’t pay well so I cringe at the thought of spending money on myself.

    My husband and I have only gone out twice since our son was born — once to a movie with another couple, and once out to dinner for our second wedding anniversary.But like Sarah, we try and spend quality time together whenever we can!

  • Dina said:

    So true. It is so hard to find time for yourself and also to find couple time…can’t remember the last time we went out without the kids!
    i know that SOMETIMES I actually leave work early just so i can have an hour or two to myself without the hubby or the kids around! That time alone is so sparse it is so precious!

  • John said:

    I would like to spend more time with my wife. It has been too long since we had a date night. I would also like to win those pacifiers. Our daughter lost hers,

  • Carly said:

    I hear ya!!! I try to make time for myself but it just doesn’t happen! I use to get my nails done every 2 weeks hair done every 4, new designer purses monthly, now I treat my self to a Coach purse in the spring and fall :( And making time to do that is a hard! I literally pulled a sweater out of my closet the other day that I bought for new years 5 years ago! HOLEEEE I forced myself to go shopping because of this. However I ended up with one pair of pants and a crap load of clothes for the kids! Go figure. Even when people tell you to relax, it will never be the same. Even just sneaking a lay down for 5 mins in bed will never be the same. The moment you become a mom you will worry for the rest of your life. No more careless days ever!

  • Sarah said:

    It is important for mothers to take out time for themselves. It is certainly harder to do so when are kids are young and demand our attention 24/7 but that even a lit bit of pampering certainly does go a long way!

  • Minna said:

    I don’t have much time for myself these days. But my husband surprised me one day, he treated me to a massage and pedicure! It was so nice. But now that my son is a bit older (almost 6 months). I’m finding it harder to find time for myself since he is active. Just finding time to write this is not easy (my son is on my lap)! My husband and I haven’t been on a date and our anniversary is coming up. Have no idea how we’re going to manage that one!

  • Kristen said:

    I wish I could schedule some me time or even a date night or two with my husband. Since our closest family lives 16 hours away and none of our “friends” are ever willing to babysit both of those have become mirages. While we occassional have family come visit us or we go back home we are always expect to see all 1001 members of our familys and never get time to do anything. I’ve arranged twice to meet and potentially hire two babysitters in the past and neither of them showed up. For the first time in 3 years my husband is taking me out to the movies. Only because my father in law is coming to visit and he offered to watch the boys for a couple of hours. I am very jealous of those people who have family and friends around willing to help, and hope that one day I can be that lucky too!!

  • Ellie said:

    Ever since Mitchell was born last March, it has been a struggle to find time for “Mommy time” or “Mom and Dad time”. I can completely relate when you say that getting your hair done is an excitement! I look forward to getting away for a couple hours and having my hair cut and socializing with someone other than my little Monkey.
    As for Mom and Dad time, we splurged and decided to rent an HD PVR receiver so that we can record shows all week and then when Hubby has a night off, we watch them together after Mitchell has gone to bed. It’s great for when he takes a nap also, I can catch up on all my trashy reality TV. LOL BONUS: no commercials!!
    I realise the first couple years are going to be difficult to try and get out and do the same things we did before (movie theatre, golfing, spontaneous trips to Cuba) becasue we have no family around for support, but I also realise that I won’t get these years back when my son is so small and cuddly :)
    The movie theatre can wait, until then, I’ll continue to record my shows, and get way too many haircuts :)

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