Prendre soin de soi

Take care of yourself

Take care of yourself

The title lets you believe that I have found the miracle solution to take care of myself, but quite the opposite: I'm calling for help! You who are a parent breathless in the hectic pace of life, what are you doing to take care of yourself?
My problem, and that of many other parents, is that you never take the time to stop. I would like it, me. My brain and my obligations don't give a damn! For many, the global pandemic that hit Quebec in 2020 brought a well-deserved breath of tranquility. For others, this pandemic was more about hitting a nail that was already pretty deep. Yes, a few days, even weeks, have been granted to us, but the burden of a busy schedule of two parents who have never stopped working with children isolated between four walls was not easy. Add school closures, distance school, quarantines, waiting for COVID tests because a runny nose, missed parties, bored friends ... In short, exhaustion was well there! As the virus slowly fades away and life seems to want to resume its normal course, my question is therefore justifiable. What are you doing to take care of yourself? What are you doing to relax? When do you allow yourself some solo time?
There is the hot bath with bubbles, but even though I have to wash myself every day, I don't always have time to soak until my anxiety magically evaporates in the water return hole. Anyway, my brain just keeps rolling even though I'm snuggled up in lavender-scented bubbles. I like to read a good novel, the problem is that I always end up rereading the same sentence fourteen times after being disturbed by my household. In the fall, I knit! It's relaxing, but short-lived. Besides, does anyone want to finish my unfinished projects from the last three fall? Because here too, missing the stitches of being disturbed, you end up getting tired. Manicure and pedicure? Good idea! Until your nail polish peels off 3 seconds after you're done just wanting to pick up a bunch of socks that were hiding under the couch. So one day, exhausted, I left on my own for a weekend. I am fortunate to have an understanding husband, aware of the mental load I carry, who will never deny me a moment of solitude. ‘’ Chow bye, the gang! Time at the hotel, here I come !! ’’ I got in my car, MY music in the carpet, MY suitcase and MY favorite wine on the back bench. I rode for an hour smiling ‘’ FREEDOM !!! ’... and then started to cry like a madeleine under the weight of guilt. Damn conscience, go! I ended the ride bored with them as if I had been gone for a thousand years.
Because in addition to learning to take care of yourself, you also have to learn to deal with the guilt that comes with it. Some people live well with it (a nod to my husband who leaves on a solo motorcycle without crying!), While others like me need to remember that we have the right. Yes, I have the right to go for an hour, half a day or for a weekend! I have the right to go alone, with my husband or a friend! I have the right, you have the right, we have the right, POINT. Easier to write than to do, I'm the first to be reminded of it, but it has to be a mantra that all parents recite to each other. So you? Do you allow it? Share with us your tips, your advice and, above all, your ideas, that we all benefit! 😍
Karine Proulx
July 2021