Ok, so it's been a while. I pretty much fell off the face of the earth back in December y'all. With the blur of Christmas festivities and getting the loooooongest lasting sinus infection ever followed immediately by nothing less than Hand Foot and Mouth virus. No. I'm so serious. Yes, I wish I were kidding. No. It's not the Hoof and Mouth thing that cows get. It's a nasty virus that hangs out in pre-schools AKA where I work.
Let's just say I felt like death. Lymph nodes were the size of eggs, my throat was covered in sores and my doctor was at a total loss. She tested me for strep, mono, and even ran blood tests to rule out lymphoma. Everything was negative, yet I just kept getting worse. Finally she referred me to an ENT, who did an endoscopy and in one second knew I had HFM. So after weeks of antibiotics which solved nothing, I switched to steroids which slowly but surely cleared everything up.
In the meantime, I just sort of disappeared. I know I had an excuse to fall off the face. But, it got me thinking... Ya know, you don't need to have Hand Foot Mouth virus to have a legit excuse to occasionally go MIA. What I mean, is that I think we feel so guilty all the time about not doing enough- not volunteering enough, not hosting enough dinner parties, not making it to church, not saying yes to every play date invitation, not organizing educational activities for every spare moment our child has, and not helping out every single person we know that has just had surgery, lost a loved one, or had a baby.
I am a giver by nature and I'm just in the habit of bringing our dinner leftovers several times a week to our widowed neighbor, volunteering to help with every class party, teach Sunday school, throw baby and bridal showers, drop off gifts and food for anyone and everyone in need... I could go on and on. But, the truth is, I really do enjoy doing all those things. It's just that I need to get it through my head that it is ok to take a break from all of it once in a while when I need to do so. You CAN say no sometimes and you do not have to feel guilty about it.
Here's the thing, those moms you see out there that seem like they are doing it all and making it look so easy. They are making sacrifices to do and be who and what they are. We all have the same 24 hours in a day and how we choose to spend it is up to us. The moms with the perfect hair and makeup are spending some extra time on that. The ones with the super fit bods are spending some extra time on that. The ones sending in homemade cookies and valentines from tiny prints with their kids face on it have chosen to spend the extra time doing that. Don't judge them because we all have the right to choose how we spend our time and there is no shame in that game.
The ones that seem to do it all, are NOT really doing it all. They are sacrificing something. Whether it's time with their families, sleep, their health, looks, or their relationships... they are absolutely sacrificing somewhere because you cannot be a master of all trades at all times. It. Does. Not. Work. That. Way. People.
So here is my advice to you, take breaks when you need to. Do NOT make that casserole for the coworker that just had a baby, say NO to volunteering at that neighborhood function, baking for that bake sale, and skip that workout class here and there when you need to. Do not apologize, and do NOT waste your time explaining yourself to yourself and others. If people want to judge, let them. You are the only one that gets to live your life.
Give when you can, but say no when you need to, because seriously though. You. Are. Enough. Amen. The end.