“I’m feeling like my clothes need to be replaced,” one of my besties texted me earlier this week. She said that all of her “go-to” wardrobe staples looked decent from a distance but were starting to look tattered along the seams, and, to be honest some things weren’t fitting that great. “Sausage casings on the thighs,” may or may not have been mentioned in this text thread.
I texted her back with my own confessions about closet staples that should be converted into rags, adding that I just can’t seem to carve out enough “me” time to find replacements.
After a few more texts back and forth we decided that it must be a “mom” thing. We never had this problem before our kids were born. But then again before we had kids we didn’t HAVE to buy an entire new wardrobe for anyone every six to twelve months.
My oldest is nine, her oldest will be eleven pretty soon, and as our kids have grown up, we’ve been so focused on keeping them from wearing high-water jeans and shoes that don’t pinch the toes that we’ve haven’t had the time to really go shopping for ourselves.
We all know that clothing shopping with kids can be the worst — sometimes impossible — especially if you’re shopping with a crafty toddler who’s a flight risk. The last thing you want to have happen is said tot opening the fitting room door and taking off while you’re in the middle of a wardrobe change.
So, just like generations of women before us, we learn to make-do with what we have. I’ve always enjoyed historical fiction stories — especially the ones with the self-sacrificing heroine. I never really fully understood the economics behind the mending of clothing or the self-sacrificing moms who’d do without so their children could have something better, but I think I get it now.
And, whether the economic limitations of your household are financial or an issue of time away from home and away from the kids, it’s totally understandable.
Our schedules are packed with wonky work hours and meetings, activities and lessons for the kids, grocery shopping, bills and cleaning. Honestly, some days are just about survival.
But, mom, if you don’t take care of yourself, who will?
Sure, your husband can make dinner, and your kids can help with the household chores, but there are things that others can’t do for you. Spending an afternoon at the spa or splurging on a wardrobe update isn’t a bad thing. A girl’s night out with other mom friends is good for the soul. Take care of that nagging thought in the back of your head schedule an appointment with your doctor and put your fears at ease — or start the path to better health.
It’s not indulgent. It’s necessary — it’s an affirmation that I tell myself often — especially on days when I feel overwhelmed by the world around me and think that I can’t slow down to take care of myself. That’s when I know it’s time to walk away from it all and spend some time with the girls.