The three parts to rhythm include rhythm for yourself (so hard to set it for your family if you don’t have any rhythm to what you do in your day, your week, your month, your year!), rhythm for the family members and pets and/or livestock, and rhythm for the things in your home (a plan of care for things because all things take maintenance!)
Today we are looking at YOU. Many mothers tell me they have a really hard time with rhythm, starting with sleep and what time they get up.
In order to get up and set the tone for your family, you must go to bed. That, of course, is not nearly as simple as it seems sometimes. Sometimes at night we are just thrilled to garner some time alone, or some time with a spouse if we are married and then we are up rather late on top of being up all night with: the child who had a nightmare and can’t go back to sleep/the toddler who is restless/the baby who still wakes up. Then, we find it hard to get up, we get up and jump into everything since the children are awake and running around, but then we do not get to take a shower or put ourselves “ together” first.
Yup, been there and done that. There is an interesting post on the value of getting up here: http://waldorfjourney.typepad.com/a_journey_through_waldorf/2011/01/when-i-.html
Going to bed is the best insurance we have in case someone will be up all night. Getting up and then getting into the shower first thing, unless we make it part of our rhythm to take a bath or shower at night, is also important. Our self-care has to come in somewhere, (and for right now I am talking about plain and simple physical self-care), and I think especially if you have multiple children or older children, it is easiest to take some care of yourself first. If you have a different experience, please leave it in the comment box below! I would love to hear everyone’s perspective!
So, here is just a list of free-flowing questions to help you think:
When do you go bed? What time do you need to go to bed?
What time do you get up in the morning? What is happening at that time and has your family already left the gate without you?
When is the time for your self-care? What do you do for your self-care? How do you take care of your skin, your hair, your teeth?
When do you exercise?
When do you go to buy clothes? There is a saying that bras really shouldn’t see a birthday, that they need frequent replacing, and this made me think of how many mothers out there are still wearing old bras, underwear that is old, and they never buy clothes for themselves either due to finances or it is just so hard to take multiple children with them to buy clothes.
When, in the course, of a month or a quarter of a month, do you schedule in your own dentist, doctor, hair appointments? I see mothers who rarely, if ever, have these kinds of appointments.
And here are some thoughts of “the variables”:
How does the co-sleeping baby/toddler/child impact getting up? What is your attitude about the early riser in the home and how do you handle this? This season is not forever! Melisa Nielsen compiled some of her thoughts on this subject in relation to a discussion regarding this on her yahoo group here: http://waldorfjourney.typepad.com/a_journey_through_waldorf/2011/01/i-want-to-get-up-but-my-kids-are-early-risers.html
How could other family members help you if there are other adults present in the home?
If you are a homeschooling family, who can help you with your children during the day so you could attend a doctor’s appointment or a dentist appointment?
I would LOVE to hear what you are doing for your skin care, exercising, how you juggle any appointments you need in the comment box below..
Please, please make it a priority to take care of yourself…again, this is just the outer part of you, I am not talking so much about personal development, inner work, rhythms of prayer here…but I feel sometimes if we get the outer part ordered, then the inner part can come…
Lastly, here is a back post for you about self-care which also addressed this theme: http://theparentingpassageway.com/2011/10/18/the-sacred-art-of-self-care/