I’m thinking about the strain we parents put on ourselves when we prioritize our children’s well-being so much that we neglect ourselves.
We forsake our own health.
That doesn’t feel right to me. Isn’t that the wrong way to live?
I’m reminded of how airplane flights start with the following, “Put your mask on first so that you can better assist others.” Those seem like smart words by which to live.
However, the idea of putting children first is natural to many of us. But here’s the thing… if we neglect ourselves we can set ourselves up for illness in the future, when our kids are adults.
We harm our own health now because we “don’t have time” to care for ourselves properly, only to turn around and put the awful stress and strain on our children when they are adults and need to take care of us.
I know friends who are caring for their unwell elderly parents. It’s hard on my friends. Very hard.
It makes me wonder… if those ill parents had better managed their health (I know some didn’t know any better, but we do!), then would they be experiencing old age with more strength, and not depending on their kids to take care of them so much? Would they be less of a stress on my friends who care for them? I think so.
This inspires me to care for myself and make it a priority. I take time to eat well, get quality rest, meditate, and exercise. It means making adjustments to my schedule so I get the needed “me time.” This will create a healthier future-me so I don’t put that stress on Kamea to care for me (when she’s an adult and I’m an old lady). I plan to live over 100 years after all. That said, when I reach 110, all bets are off.
Plus, and this is a big plus… kids learn by example. How can I expect my daughter prioritize her own health and well being, if I’m not doing it myself?