Special Needs Moms: Self Care Requires Self Knowledge

Happy New Year, everyone! You got through the holidays! Yay! They’re over! Just me?

Now we’ve got a new year, with a new start, and hopefully it’s the start of a good year.

Onward and upward, right?

We’ve talked before about how being a special needs mom is a job.

It’s not a vacation.

And it’s certainly not Holland.

It’s a job (don’t get me wrong, it’s a super rewarding job, and I love it, but it’s a lot of work, too).

And it’s oftentimes an exhausting job.

And everyone always goes on and on and on and on about self care for special needs moms, but what if you don’t even know what that looks like anymore? What if the thought of taking a long bath where you can be alone with your thoughts sounds horrifying? What if you can’t get out with friends on a regular basis? What if you’re so tired that nothing sounds fun or relaxing anymore?

If you don’t know who you are and what you need, self care is going to be so much harder and maybe even feel impossible.

Self care requires self knowledge!

If you want to build yourself back up, refill your own cup, you have to know what makes you tick, what gives you energy to keep you going.

*And don’t worry. This isn’t me leading up to selling you something. Some of the tools I suggest aren’t free, but I’m not selling them.

So, a few years back my husband was in a leadership program at his job and we had such good conversations as he learned more about himself and what made him tick.

We worked a bit to figure out me, too, but it was really more in contrast to my husband rather than any clear look at how I worked.

I started counseling. I was working through some of the trauma and stress and such of Evie’s first several years. I was making some progress.

Life felt calmer and more in control.

And then we had a simple overnight hospital stay. It shouldn’t have been that big of a deal, but my husband and I agreed it was one of the worst ones we’d had from a PTSD perspective.

And after that weekend, I couldn’t ignore a big problem anymore:

I loved my life, but I hated my daily life.

And I hate admitting that, but I would guess it’s probably a pretty common feeling for many people.

And my wonderful husband told me we needed to really invest some time in figuring ME out, what made ME tick, what I needed each day.

He’s quite a catch.

But it makes sense. And not just for special needs moms, but stay at home moms and working moms, and dads, and ya know…people. If you don’t know what you’re good at, if you don’t know what you need to be happy (because it sure as heck isn’t going to look just like everyone else), then how on earth are you going to enjoy your daily life?

Especially when you’re in a position where you can’t go find a different job.

*raises hand*

That’s where I’m at. And I don’t want a different job, either. I just wanted to figure out how to enjoy this job, this life, more on a daily basis.

So here’s the thing:

NO ONE is going to force you to figure that stuff out.

You don’t have a special needs mom manager.

You’re on your own.

Well, unless you read this blog.

I won’t be your manager, but I’ll be happy to share the tools I’ve used and the journey I’m on.

Because being a special needs mom is such a great job. It really is.

And I want you to love it.

And I want you to be good at it.

And I want you to figure out how to take care of yourself so you can keep going.

All in your own way.

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