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When I was a little girl, my mom watched General Hospital every single day. She never missed it– from Luke and Laura’s wedding to Sonny and Carly/Brenda.
Soap operas were not at all child appropriate, yet our parents didn’t seem to care.
What I want to know is, when did moms trade in their soap opera time for Peppa Pig and Dora the Explorer? When did we decide it was more important for our kids to chill out in front of television on a Tuesday afternoon than to take a break and do something for ourselves?
At some point, we all became Pinterest moms. Worrying so much about themed birthday parties, searching the web for keto-friendly dinners and basically forgetting what down time feels like.
The thing is, soap operas were a small part of the day where we got to see our mom focus on her. To see her take time out to do something that was completely pointless just for the sake of enjoying it.
Maybe she watched while she did something, like peel potatoes or fold towels. (I remember running to put clothes away during commercial breaks.)
None of that mattered to me. What mattered is that I saw my mom taking a little time for herself. Don’t we want our kids to know that personal time is important? How can we ever show them that if we are always putting everyone else’s not-so-big needs in front of our own?
For decades, moms have been living their lives, and their children have been living theirs. At some point, we decided to wrap ourselves so tightly into everything that they do, we forgot about us.
And the worst part is, our kids don’t need that. They don’t need to live in a world where the television is always on things they want to watch or snacks are always what they want to eat.
If we don’t put ourselves first, one of two things is going to happen, and neither of them is very pretty.
The first is that our kids are going to never think that anything is more important than they are. They will demand everything be their way, and completely unwilling compromise.
That just won’t do.
The second thing will be the kids who emulate us and never EVER put themselves first and always let everyone and everything walk all over them.
That just won’t do either.
So ladies, take that 2pm downtime for yourself. Sip on a diet coke, paint your toenails, and watch your stories for crying out loud.