Let’s face it, Mamas: we rarely put ourselves first. Placing the needs of everyone in the family ahead of ours is in our mom genes, hardwired into our very DNA. If the saying, “Isusubo mo na lang, ibibigay mo pa sa anak mo” sounds familiar, it’s because we’ve all been in that situation where we chose to give our kids what’s meant for us instead – time, money, resources. We provide for our kids to a fault sometimes. But let’s be real: moms can’t pour on an empty cup! We need to take care of ourselves, too. This can be in the form of getting ourselves our favorite dessert, taking the time to book (and actually go) to that brunch place we saw on IG last week, and packing our bags for a brief staycation!
But Momma, if these things are really not possible for you to achieve right now, the good news is, you need not go far for that much-needed self-treat! Sometimes, setting up a dedicated space for YOU right inside your home will do the trick! We’re sure you have a million reasons why you’d rather not create your very own “Mom Space” at home, but here are a few reasons why you should.
As a working mom, I am aware that the grind never stops. Those e-mails and deadlines never seem to end, so I come home tired to my rambunctious four-year-old little girl. Admittedly, the long day affects how I interact with my child. So a quick pick me up lies right in a small space just for me, where the sights and smell of freshly brewed coffee never fails to relax me. My coffee area has a number of odd cups and mugs from places we visited as a family. When I am here, I am reminded that it is ok to slow down, to remember to pace myself in the journey of balancing being a mom and being a career woman.
After giving birth to Naya in 2019, I seriously considered being a Stay At Home Mom (SAHM) to focus on being the best mom to her. Upon discussion with my husband who always supports where I am in life, we decided that I would go back to my corporate job after my maternity leave ended. Now that Naya is already 4, there are no regrets to my decision, as working also helps our family fulfill our goals for Naya’s future. When my work and chores are all done for the day, I proceed to my book nook where my novels ranging from mysteries, historical romances, and crime/thrillers are. I am a fan of happy endings and have chosen authors that provide that 100%. I also set up this area with throw pillows scattered on our floor to provide comfort as I enter new worlds to help me rest or learn more about the world outside mine.
Picture this: it’s Monday morning, your kids slept late and aren’t even up for school yet. Your onsite work meeting has been moved an hour earlier, and you’re not sure if you will make it on time, thanks to the Metro traffic. Your husband reminds you that you have balikbayans coming over for dinner. You’re at your wits’ end at 8:30 AM! When you finally had the chance to glance at the mirror, you asked yourself: who even is that harried woman looking back at you?
When you have one of those days (or weeks), it’s time to take a breather. I have a very simple workout area where I set up my workout mat at least thrice a week to keep myself healthy. The best time for me to sweat out the exhaustion of the work day is before it starts, but to be honest sometimes that takes a back seat due to the busy schedules we’ve set for ourselves. A 20-30 minute session in this area can work wonders, as I am also able to sleep better after exercise.
Social media shows us how some super moms can carry the load of being a business owner/jetsetter/gym buff/baker/writer while working full time. In turn, their lives make you feel like you aren’t enough or you’re stuck in your old, boring routines! For me, during the times when the world is too loud and pressures (and tempers) are at a boiling point, I try to remove myself from the situation and search for ways to make myself happy.
This is when I go to my writing area. As a self-proclaimed book worm, I also try to write short stories. It’s highly therapeutic and it gives me moments to indulge in my own creativity. Finding something you like to do, something that was forgotten because life took over, is a gift I hope you are able to re-discover through a creative space like a hobby or crafts area.
I saw something on IG recently that resonated with me. It was the “Let Them” Philosophy, or the acknowledgement that people will always respond to stimuli differently, and that we don’t have to chase anyone/anything to get validation. When we acknowledge the hard days, we open ourselves to the possibilities of good days coming ahead. When everything gets to the point of being too much, I temporarily seclude myself and I spend time in my meditation area. Having a quiet place to recover surrounded by comfortable and relaxing scents (look into gifts received from occasions such as Christmas or birthdays!) is a great way to calm me down.
What are you waiting for, Mama? Set up your own space now. After all, Mama, you deserve it.