Finding the Balance in Family Life

Kids’ needs, husband’s needs. Doctor’s appiontments, sickness. Shopping and cooking. The list of a mom’s daily tasks are endless. I absolutely love being a stay-a-home mom, but finding time for myself can be nearly impossible at times. When my oldest was a baby, I didn’t have a car, the internet was in its infancy and I felt lonely. Plain and simple. My creative outlets and “me time” consisted of reading during her naptime and taking pictures of her. Ten years later, still with little ones, I met with two friends every Thursday night for what we jokingly called “Grump Therapy”. Grump Therapy was a time for us sip coffee, chat, laugh and vent about the week’s events.

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We talked about everything, big and small over coffee. No matter what was going on in our lives, we knew we just had to make it to our next session of Grump Therapy and we’d be fine. “Thursdays are sacred,” we would say. Then, about four years ago, one friend began the long process of divorce just as my son’s long medical journey was beginning. We began missing a Thursday here and there, until it was no longer possible for us to get together. I was suddenly in need of a way to express myself… I had been blogging as a way to keep long-distance family updated on our adoption process. Soon that turned into a passion. I began sharing funny stories about my children and since each post “needed” a photo, I began to take more and more photos.

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I wanted to take better photos so I upgraded my camera and learned how to really use it. In 2010 my son was born with a heart defect and I suddenly found myself spending long hours in waiting rooms, hospitals and doctors offices. My photography business went on hold as I focused on my son. But my camera was still by my side.

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I spent the next three years documenting his medical journey. It was cathartic for me. I have found that for me one of the most important parts of finding balance in family life and that elusive “me time” is to find a hobby that I love and that engergizes me. Over years my go-to hobbies have changed; knitting, scrapbooking, blogging, photography. For a few years, it was simply coffee with friends. Over my 19 years of motherhood, I have learned to go with the ebb and flow of friendships and hobbies. Few things in life last forever. When I could no longer meet with friends for coffee on a regular basis, I focused on my blog. When my son was in the hosptial, I took photos and documented that. You can find a bit of “me time” no matter what your circumstances. Maybe it will be a weekend away with girlfriends, or maybe just a cup of coffee before the kids awake. Whatever it is, make sure to fuel yourself and savor the moment. You are important too.

renee

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www.littleearthlingblog.com

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