Sorry, you are now out of vacation time because you used it all for time taking your kids to appointments or when your childcare is unavailable. You should go on vacations though. It’s good to relax and unwind from work. Makes you a better employee.
- Don’t forget the kids need healthy meals (and so do you! you are trying to lose that last 20 lbs before swim season right). That requires meal planning, grocery shopping, and meal prep on the weekend. But also hang out with your kids on the weekend since during the week you only get to hang out with them when they are exhausted and angry that you made the wrong kind of spaghetti for dinner.
- Date your spouse! It’s important to keep your relationship alive and fresh. Try to go out one-two times a month. Good, kid free time. Hire a babysitter, they charge 22+ dollars an hour in your area so make sure to take out an extra mortgage and/or work another job to be able to afford this.
- Oh hey you should have a hobby too. It’s important to have “you time”. Also be well read, keep up with the latest pop culture and TV shows, and keep an eye on politics and be able to discuss at least one of the above on the small chance you are out in public and encounter another adult necessitating small talk.
- Make sure to have friends. Social time is SO important. Surely there is an hour or two left in the week after all of the working, appointments, exercising, cooking, scheduling, cleaning, imparting lifelong morals and learning on the kids, the usual. Maybe go out after the kids are down for a glass of wine and a bite to eat. Make it a healthy bite though. And you may regret that wine at your 5.30 am spin class.
- Self care though. SO important. See also: getting in shape. See the general doctor, the dentist (TWICE), the lady doctor. Prob need to get your eyes checked. Full body skin checks two+ times a year (just me? OK well). Mental health too. Postpartum anxiety? But you look fine and your kids are so cute. Everyone should have a therapist. Good luck finding one that takes your insurance and has hours outside of your normal working time (out of vacation time, remember?). That leaves evening time when you want to hang out with your kids. But it’s important, so make time for it.
- Don’t wear yoga pants and a mum bun or society is going to mock you in numerous witty blog posts. Never mind that nothing fits. Going to have to get up even earlier so you have time to style your hair, wing your eye liner and search for a pair of pants that fits your new post-baby (or multiple baby) shape.
- Get off your phone, turn off the TV, and enjoy your life. Enjoy your kids. THESE ARE THE GOOD TIMES make sure to love every minute of life because before you know it all of this will be in the past.
I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to lean OUT. Thanks for coming to my Ted talk.
Originally published HERE.
Sarah Buckley Friedberg lives in Needham, MA with her husband and three children (ages 6, 3 and 1). She is a microbiology manager for a medical device company. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys outdoor activities with her family, cooking, and photography. You can read more from Sarah over on Facebook and Instagram.