Motherhood is beautiful, fulfilling, tiring and frustrating all at once. While it does come with glorious moments , it is more often than not a race against time – in a busy and demanding world of diaper changes, tantrums, laundry, cuddles, laughter, stepping on Lego, more laundry and the list goes on. Inevitably, you start believing that being a mother is all about sacrifice. You may feel that your life is no longer about you, it’s all about the kids. And all too often, this new phase of life heralds the end of pursuing your passion, your dreams and your aspirations.
But no, this isn’t true at all! In fact, it’s so important for mums to retain a sense of their identity and keep aspiring to achieve their dreams. Like Nelson Mandela once said, “There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”
This is a struggle because mums are surrounded by a culture that dichotomises motherhood. You’re a good mum or a bad one, a self-sacrificing or selfish one, present or absent. But in reality, motherhood is anything but a dichotomy. Instead, it’s about finding the perfect fit between you as a mum and you as an individual. Yes, it can be challenging. At times, it can be downright difficult. But no, it isn’t impossible.
Drypers strongly believes that parenting and passions fit together so here are five simple ways to make your life as a mum fit with pursuing your passion:
Motherhood and Pursuing Your Passion: A Perfect Fit
1. Have a Vision for Yourself
Mums, are master planners – they meticulously organise the endless details of every birthday party, playdate and dinner menu for the next three decades. But oftentimes, they forget to plan for themselves, losing sight of the woman in the mirror.
Stop right there, mama, and take the first step to pursuing your passion: Set some goals that don’t involve the family. These goals could be big dreams, like furthering your education, writing that book, or starting your own business. Or it could be something as simple as learning a new skill or picking up a sport. Whatever it is, you need to identify where you’re going. Start taking the steps today so that you can get where you want to be in the years to come.
2. Make a Schedule
A typical mum schedule involves sending the kids to school, shuttling them to and fro between classes, picking up groceries, the list goes on… In order to pursue your passions, you need to work yourself into the schedule.
Block out an hour or two(or more) to work towards the goals you identified for yourself. Also, set aside some quiet time for you to relax, rejuvenate and take your mind off everything. Never underestimate the importance of this, mums. Neglecting quiet time could send you hurtling towards burnout in a short amount of time.
Stay positive about your schedule, no matter how busy you are. Surely it’s possible to spend some time for yourself. Mums work with 72 hours in a day, remember?
We’d like to believe that all mums are superheroes. In fact, I’m quite sure we are, but even superheroes need a bit of assistance. Batman has Alfred, and you deserve someone too, Wonder Woman.
Don’t hesitate to ask for help when you need it, and don’t insist on doing it all. The truth is, you can’t. There are some things that hubby can (and should) take charge of. and there are many others who can step in.
Remember, it takes a village to raise a child. Reaching out to the village doesn’t make you any less of a mum. If you outsource some things, you free up time for you to pursue your passions. In your priority list, your passions should be of equal importance as your mum duties!
4. It’s Okay To Say No
Children have minds of their own. They will refuse to attend an event, so you end up cancelling because you don’t have childcare arrangements. They’ll want to read a book, and beg you to keep on reading story after story to them , especially when there’s something you need to do. They’ll want to have a sleepover party just when you have to submit your portfolio the next morning. Just say no.
Yes, you will feel guilty for turning them down, but sometimes a mum’s got to do what a mum’s go to do!
5. Hang in There, Don’t Give Up
Last but not least, I’d like to remind you that the road to success is not a sprint, but a marathon. It may take you months, even years to achieve your goals but don’t give up on yourself. There will be good days and there will be better days. When you face setbacks, or when you feel like you are going nowhere, stop to smell the roses and tell yourself you will get there no matter how long it takes or how many times you fail. Your resilience in fighting against the odds will also be one of the best lessons you could teach your children!
Drypers believes that parenting and passions fit together is every mum’s ally in achieving your dreams because when it fits, it’s amazing!
Mama, it’s not that difficult to find a place for yourself in the big maze of motherhood. You see, once upon a time not too long ago, before the sleepless nights, before the clouds of self-doubt, before the stretch marks and the extra pounds, there was a woman who was confident, who liked what she saw when she looked in the mirror, who had passion and drive for the things that set her soul on fire. That woman is still there. Dive into the depths of your soul and bring her back. You don’t want to lose her for she’s all that you’ve got!