How To Take Care Of Yourself Like You Take Care Of Everyone Else

woman meditating on beach

Learning to dedicate time to myself is a bigger challenge than I'd imagined it would be.

Do you want to hear something really sad? It took me three weeks to sit down to paint my nails. Not to find time for a mani/pedi at a salon, not to buff and polish and shape at home. Three weeks to slap a coat of pearly-pink paint on 10 fingertips. Seriously. Just paint. Two coats of color, no base, nothing fancy.

Don't even get me started on how long it's been since I've had time to give myself a deep conditioning treatment.

You know you're a mom when these things start to happen. I've put off going to a salon for an actual hairstyle for longer than I care to admit. My legs are shaved occasionally, at best. I've been meaning to get around to a good full-body sugar scrub for ages now. I keep promising myself that I actually will go to that exercise class.

There's just always so much that begs to be done: dishes, helping with homework, the ever-present piles of laundry, dinner that doesn't come from a box or a drive-through window. It's just so hard to enjoy that pore-refining face mask when you have a little voice asking why you're all green, or finding time to allow your nails to dry properly when you're folding freshly dried towels. How To Be A Mother, A Wife—And Yourself

I'm not great at carving out "me time." I’ll be the first to admit that. Part of the problem is my need to be in charge, even when I say I don't want to be. Of course, it's a given that I'm the only person in the world, and certainly in my household, who can do laundry properly and, naturally, no one else can wash a dish as well as I can. These chores involve water and soap, making them far too complicated for any mere mortal to understand. No one else can be trusted to it.

I have control issues.