I’m really excited to be re-introducing our Full Plate Mom Series–where we feature women who are striving to balance all the daily challenges of life, while focusing on health and wellness for their families. Today I am VERY proud and honored to introduce my dear friend Stephanie, of the fantastic blog Naturally Mindful . I’ve known Stephanie for about 10-years. Our husbands used to work together years ago and our friendship grew from the first time we met. Despite Stephanie and her husband moving to Ohio from Lil’Rhodey years ago, we still remain close. Stephanie has always been someone I admired–she takes on every challenge with determination and conviction, as is evident by her VERY full plate. Stephanie has committed to a natural lifestyle for her family and shares her passion and recipes for natural products and food with everyone on her blog. I hope that you enjoy Stephanie’s guest blog and if you’re not a reader of her blog of a Facebook fan of her’s you should go and check her out and tell her that the Fit Moms sent you! I’m certain that you’ll love Stephanie as much as I do!
Hello Fit Moms! It’s an honor to be a guest and have the opportunity to talk to you today.
When my friend Dani asked me if I could write a post on how I manage my crazy life I jumped at the opportunity. I even said I would have it done by the end of the week…then a whole month went by. Maybe I am not very good at this managing thing. It got me thinking, how do we do it all?
Let me tell you a little about myself. My name is Stephanie and I am mom to an almost three year old boy and one on the way due this summer, wife to a very supportive husband, furmom to two dachshunds, nursing student, and blogger. And just like you, I try to do it all, have it all, and balance it all.
Deep down we all know there is no such a thing as the perfect mother, right? Then why do we try so hard to be one? And what’s worse, why do we think we are the only ones who fail?
Have you met my faithful companion? I bet you two are BFFs, too.
I should have done this. I shouldn’t have done that. I forgot this. I forgot that. I should have said this. I shouldn’t have said that. I do too much. I don’t do enough.
On a typical day I wake up early and go to school. I come back before noon and my day is spent between school work, blog duties, errands, housework, and play dates. Then a couple nights a week I go back to class. After everyone is asleep, I continue studying or tackling the million tasks required to run a blog.
It’s exhausting. Most days I go to bed knowing I didn’t accomplish everything that was in my to-do list. Mothering is exhausting; we simply don’t have enough time. I don’t have to illustrate how much free time I had pre-baby compared to my jam-packed life now because if you have children you know very well what I am talking about. But just for kicks, let’s compare really quickly my first pregnancy to this one. During my first pregnancy I had time to go to yoga three times a week, and swim laps on the off days. I had time to nap anytime I wanted. I had time to get a Ph.D. in how to choose the perfect baby gear. And I even had time to wash my hair and give myself a blow-out at the onset of my labor!
This pregnancy? I fool myself into thinking chasing a toddler counts as my physical activity. I haven’t looked at one single pregnancy magazine—surely all that baby gear in my basement doesn’t have an expiration date, right? Most days my hair is up in a bun, and I don’t mean that cute “messy” bun I keep pinning on Pinterest.
Most days my house is a mess. I forgot to brush my teeth. I didn’t have a full from-scratch meal ready for dinner. I didn’t finish that paper due in a couple days, and my toddler probably watched a little more TV than I am comfortable confessing.
But you know what? I have come a long way. I used to be on the SAD diet* (toaster strudles for breakfast, anyone?), I was the farthest from eco-friendly, and I was stuck in job I hated.
Now I eat Real Food, influenced by the works of Dr. Weston A. Price to be exact, I’ve ditched all toxic chemicals from our home, and I am in school to fulfil my childhood dream.
Most days are not perfect. But I kept a tiny person—and two dogs—alive, I fed him nourishing foods, and I read him a bed time story and told him I loved him. I am tired but I love writing blogposts that inspire others to seek a more natural life. I probably should have gone to bed an hour or two ago but I am learning topics I am passionate about. And yes, I take the occasional nap during the day even if it means fighting my toddler so we can nap together.
I’m going back to the yoga studio, and maybe even grab a coffee with a friend after class and I won’t feel guilty for taking care of myself, physically and emotionally.
Grab that soy-free, GMO free, organic, and fair trade chocolate. Go for a run. Sit down and read a magazine. Watch that Downton Abbey episode it’s been sitting in your DVR. Call a friend and laugh until your belly hurts. Go to the gym and sweat until it hurt so bad you can’t help by smile. Go ahead; you are not a bad mother, you won’t stop being a mother. In fact, you are pretty awesome, and you are doing your best.
I am doing my best, and my best is enough.
Stephanie Heald is a mom, a wife, and a currently a nursing student with a focus on alternative medicine. She writes at Naturally Mindful, where she makes going green and healthy attainable to families getting started in the wonderful world of eco-consciousness. She believes in real food and living as natural as possible…and why not, leaving behind a better planet for our children. Visit her on Facebook , and on Pinterest .
Stephanie Heald is a mom, a wife, and a currently a nursing student with a focus on alternative medicine. She writes at Naturally Mindful , where she makes going green and healthy attainable to families getting started in the wonderful world of eco-consciousness. She believes in real food and living as natural as possible…and why not, leaving behind a better planet for our children. Visit her on Facebook or on Pinterest .