This topic has been on my mind quite a bit these past couple of weeks for several reasons. Mostly because of some comments I’ve recently read in social media, as well as things I’ve been told by friends that have left me scratching my head, so to speak. For example, I had a co-worker tell me the other day, “I just saw your blog for the first time. I wish I had that kind of time on my hands”. I wasn’t too sure how to take that… Then there was the picture I posted a few weeks ago of a crafting projects I’m working on. This picture prompted a friend to comment, “you’re lucky Grace let’s you work on all these projects”. You have no idea how many times I’ve been told things like, “my kid just demands too much of my time to have hobbies”. And then there are the comments we’ve all read other bloggers write that sound something like, sorry I’ve been away from my blog for so long, I have been focusing my time on my children and family, etc. I know that when things like this are said, they’re not meant to come across as personal jabs or backhanded compliments, but sometimes they do come across that way. I’m not sure why, but when I read or hear things like this; it always makes me feel a bit defensive, like I need to defend why I make time for myself… Why I blog or why I organize some days to fit my crafty stuff in.
The way I see it – we all have our hobbies, whether we realize it or not. Some of us choose to play golf on the weekends or go shopping and get our nails done on a regular basis. Some of us like to spend free time working out or attending/watching weekly sporting events. Some of us enjoy spending our alone time further developing skills like gardening, photography, playing sports or just reading. And then there are people like my wife who love electronics and use their “me time” to play computer games or do other geeky tech stuff. My point is, we all do something (well, hopefully all of us) do stuff, just for us. We do things that we enjoy, things that relieve stress or simply allow us to “check out” and relax for a bit. And as much as this is true, it doesn’t always keep parents from judging each other for what we each individually choose to make time for. I guess my question is, why does it have to be that way?
We’ve all heard the term “Pinterest Mom”. This term is used to describe an over achieving – everything has to be perfect kind of mom. A “Pinterest Mom” is one who tends to be more crafty than most and channels her inner Martha Stewart frequently. The truth is, when a mother is called a “Pinterest Mom”, it’s not usually meant to be a compliment. Having said that, I’ll admit that I’ve been called a Pinterest Mom on more than one occasion and I’m okay with it. I’m okay with it because I enjoy it. I enjoy crafting and blogging so I make time for it and that’s ok. Do I always do these things when Gracie is asleep, no, I don’t. I am here to admit that there are times that I set the Bean up with a snack, a movie or an activity so that I can work on some “me stuff” and I have no problem admitting that. Here’s why – I feel it’s important for her to watch her mama do something she enjoys too. I feel it’s important for her to understand that sometimes she needs to have patience and use her brilliant imagination to keep herself entertained for a bit. I feel that by allowing my daughter to watch me do the things I love, one day she may love doing the same things and then we can do them together. My gal doesn’t always need to be at a play date or in a toddler class of some sort when I catch up on my blogs or scrapbook or do anything else really. Do I try and do most of these things when she is napping or in bed for the night – yes, but not always.
I guess the point of this post is to tell other mamas (and papas) that it’s okay to carve out some time for YOU. It’s okay to be a “Pinterest Mom” if that’s what you truly enjoy or to do something just for you and it doesn’t have to always come after you’ve done every possible thing for everyone else, because guess what -- you deserve to make your happiness a priority too. As a mom I know this doesn’t happen often enough but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try and make your own “mom time”.
When I sit down with Gracie and show her pictures and video posted on our family blog or flip through her scrapbook that I’ve made page-by-page, she squeals with excitement! She LOVES looking at these things over and over and that’s just one of the many reasons I do it. It makes me happy, and as a result, it makes her happy. :)