Guest author Nikki Boether -Located in Phoenix Arizona, is a lifestyle blogger and mental health advocate who writes openly and honestly about motherhood on her blog: Charlie Takes Phoenix. Connect with her on Instagram!
I'm selfish with my time; even more so after having a baby.
These days, Quiet, reflective moments are understandably few and far between. So when I do come across an additional 30 minutes of the day that I don't owe to anyone, or need to use productively; It's like finding a $50 bill in the back pocket of a pair of jeans; I don't want to tell anyone, or have to give it up.
People always tell me that I couldn't possibly be an introvert, because I'm generally a loud, high-strung, a-hole (kind of like a Chihuahua, If I'm being honest.)The problem with this assumption is that a lot of introverts are generally outgoing - Under the right circumstances, when they feel like they have something meaningful to contribute to their surroundings; or know the people that they are with, and feel comfortable around them. That being said, I have to mentally prepare myself for social gatherings, or places where I know I am going to have to engage more than usual with others. If I'm too quiet, it's rude. If I talk too much, I am prone to exhausting myself too quickly. 'Turning on' for these situations takes a lot of work; and by the time we get home, I normally need some time alone to regroup and recharge.
There are no keywords such as regroup, recharge, quiet time, me, introvert, alone....when you have one kid, let alone multiples. All of that silly nonsense goes right out the window when you are at the constant beck and call of tiny shrieking human(s); who by the way, could give zero pieces of fudge in the world if you are emotionally drained, or overstimulated by life. Some days, the energy you are required to exert greatly exceeds what you feel you can physically give; setting off the inner ping! of your ‘had it up to here’ maintenance light, warning that you’re running low on, well, everything; and to tread lightly.
Don't get me wrong. Being a parent has been, hands down, the coolest chapter in my life by far. However, I would be lying if I said that biding my time between being a stellar mom, while also trying to be an equally decent partner, friend, sister, daughter, etc...was not the hardest thing I've ever had to do; because it is. So. Hard.
I sometimes have to choose between not seeing a friend for a few months, or even longer; so that I can fit in spending time with my family and kid instead. Or, In lieu of mindlessly sitting in the quiet for an hour (heaven) I need to step up and be the girlfriend my boyfriend signed up to do life with. The one that used to have endless amounts of oomph, and put him on a pedestal. I know that some of my relationships have certainly suffered in the wake of motherhood; luckily, the ones that truly matter, pick up right where they left off, no matter what major life events take place.
None the less, I try to wake up each morning with a grateful heart; reminding myself that I'm lucky enough to be gifted genuine relationships to fight for in the first place. That in itself makes me strive a little harder to ensure that they are well nurtured and supported, even if my efforts fall short at times.
And while this is a lovely takeaway on spreading my time more evenly; None of it does any good If I'm not paying enough attention to my own respite.
Completely random side note: The ‘stretched-thin’ vibe of this post seems eerily similar to the occupational hazards of Stretch Armstrong. I do not envy that guy.
Also, just for shits and gigs; here is the link to the Myers-Briggs test. I do this every now and again to gauge where I'm at socially. (other than awkward. I'm always that.)
Happy 'me time' Hunting!