After doing this mom-of-a-newborn gig half a dozen times, you'd think I'd know this by now; but during this past week, I feel like I'm learning this lesson all over again: I MUST MAKE REST A PRIORITY. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that out, and writing about this makes me feel sort of dumb for not doing a better job in this area. But I tell you what, when life feels somewhat (understatement!) out of control because of the addition of a tiny creature in the household who can make much bigger creatures scramble just by opening his little mouth and howling, it is so tempting to want to regain some kind of control over something. Maybe that's why moms of little ones find such satisfaction from accomplishments we can see and measure--all the laundry being done, for example; or a closet being entirely emptied and the newly-organized contents replaced neatly.
There are days when I KNOW I should spend my "free time" (or MAKE some free time) sleeping to recover from my nighttime sleep deficit, but instead I stay up to dust and vacuum the baby's room, or gather items to drop off at the thrift store, or wipe down the shelves in the refrigerator, or any number of other household tasks. It is so tempting to push myself harder than I ought, just so I can get that sense of accomplishment that is oh-so-satisfying. But if I do that too many times, for too many days, I wind up exhausted, grumpy, and vulnerable to emotional swings that are wider than I would like!
So I'm learning--yes, again!--to let some things go. To choose to nap, like I did today, with my baby snuggled up on my chest, rather than stay awake to wash all the dishes.
Because at this stage of life, prioritizing rest is one of the wisest choices I can make.
~ this isn't really related to the rest of this blog post; by look, here's a pretty tree! it just so happens to be my favorite tree this autumn, and I've loved looking out my front window and watching as these leaves change, day by day, as the tree prepares for its winter rest ~