On the last day of summer vacation, I had a plan. We were going to have a mommy-son day. After Wyatt’s nap and my workout, we would make homemade ice cream, visit the park, and finish the day swimming.
We were going to ROCK the last day!
Then, life interrupted.
After putting him down for his nap, I felt a sharp pain in my abdomen and steadily declined in the hours following, ultimately leading to the Emergency Room and a 104 fever.
I may have had a urinary tract issue two months prior, but we were so busy. My son is so young. How do you go to the doctor with a two-year-old?
ALSO, THERE IS STILL A PANDEMIC!
All of these were the, for lack of a better term, excuses, I said to myself.
I vowed as I was lying in that hospital bed that I would begin to make my health a priority once again—no matter what was going on in the crazy world or our busy home.
However, here is the catch, it is hard for moms. Especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, the utilization of women’s preventative service has been significantly disrupted.
The question, at least for me, is how do moms, who are constantly putting others first, begin to prioritize the time and necessity for their health in this chaotic, pandemic reality?
Here are three strategies that may help you as they have me:
Self-Care and Weight Management
Diet and exercise go a long way for preventative health. Prioritizing your mental and physical health is not supposed to be a luxury. It is essential to ensure we can take care of our families.
It is like the safety information for pre-flight. We are supposed to put the oxygen mask on us first, THEN our children.
Taking care of our health is the equivalent. If we do not take the time to unwind with meditation, a good diet, exercise, and a comfy night’s rest, how can we take care of others?
Here are a few simple tips to help carve out time to care for ourselves:
Set your alarm for 20 minutes earlier to fit in some meditation or a devotional over a cup of coffee in silence.
Exercise can be at home. You do not need a gym! Peloton. NordicTrack. Free Weights. Even a walk in the neighborhood goes a long way.
Meal prep or even find ways to make your meal stress lessen and your meal times healthier. There are great meal delivery services that cater to any diet out there (and they even offer free trials!)
In addition to a good night’s sleep and getting the blood flowing, preventative care check-ups are essential in ensuring your healthy lifestyle. According to health officials, “getting preventative care can reduce the risk for diseases, disabilities, and death.”
So keep that dental cleaning, mammogram, and bloodwork – even when it is hard to find the time.
Ask for help! (Yes, even you!)
So many times, I did not go to appointments, or I avoided the doctor because, as a family, we already have so many balls to juggle.
However, do you know what happened when I was rushed to the ER?
People stepped up to help. The neighbors watched Wyatt. Family drove me to the hospital. Friends even brought over dinner.
As moms, we have to be comfortable reaching out to the village. After all, wouldn’t you step up to help?