• Stacey Harp

The Best Way to Recapture "Me" Time

One of people’s biggest peeves, I would assume, is punctuality.

While many of us moms struggle with arriving at appointments and events on time, we know that it’s important to make an attempt to get wherever we need to be in a timely manner. And it’s a value we’re encouraged to teach our children early, beginning with school drop-offs.

Lateness has always been frowned upon throughout the ages. (I mean, c’mon. Truancy and tardiness were the basis of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off!)

But I would also guess that, as much as we emphasize not being late, many people are equally peeved with those who are perpetually early.

Well, guess what?

That’s me.

But, here’s the kicker: I may show up early, but it’s so I can sit in my car.

Yes, that’s right. I said, “So I can sit in my car.”

Now, I’m guessing you’re probably shaking your head and thinking, “She’s crazy,” but I want you just to give me some latitude and I’ll take you down my rabbit hole.

I’m a mom. I have three little kids, 6 years and younger, which also means I have VERY little time to myself (I can’t even pee alone!). My house is always a disaster. My laundry is never folded (let alone put away). I go to bed and wake up feeling exhausted. It’s a vicious cycle that I’ve, unfortunately, heard won’t end for quite some time.

My life is often chaos in a bottle. But here’s the thing – I can’t see any of that from my car.

It doesn’t matter how messy my house is, how unkempt my hair, how large the laundry pile is from the front seat of my minivan. Heck, I can’t even see how many Cheezits are on the floor in the back from my lovely –and very comfy – heated driver’s seat.

All I can see is MY time. And it is glorious!

It’s my time to devour books or podcasts. My time to rock out to the 90s alternative station with the unedited lyrics (admit it, you want to do this too!). My time to crochet or craft. My time to write (guess where I’m writing this very blog post from?!?). Or best yet, my time to rest, unwind, and rejuvenate.

Self care is so extremely important for all of us, but especially for the primary caregiving parent. And ladies, let’s face it. That’s typically us.

We can’t give our all to our kids if our all isn’t there to start with. I’ve heard, on so many occasions by so many of my amazing friends, that there just isn’t time for self care. They don’t have a moment to spare for themselves.

When I hear this, I get so sad.

But I also use that opportunity to share my car trick. Often times I will hear, “Well, it’s just not possible for me to get out of the house any quicker,” or “I just can’t be early.”

I say give it a try.

Even if it’s only just being five minutes early.

Because, I’m telling you, once you get that taste of the peace that comes from just sitting in the driver’s seat with your radio on, your phone in your hand, with absolutely nothing you have to do in that moment, you’ll find a way to add more time.

Even if you have a younger child in the back seat, you will find a way to carve out that precious “me time” – even if it’s just to browse Facebook or catch up on reading blogs for a few blissful moments of quiet before resuming your busy schedule of errands and activities.

This is it right here, folks! Relaxing while my 2 year old is passed out in her car seat while I write this blog entry.

So, load up your kiddos with water and a snack. Drive around a little to see if they fall asleep. Or just put on "Baby Shark" (I know. But desperate times...) and let them dance away while you find a quiet spot to park. Then, sit back and relax for a few minutes.

I promise you won’t regret it and you’ll find a way to do it more often – in the car or elsewhere – in a variety of ways.

#metime #early #enjoythewait #motherhood #selfcare #punctuality

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