Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Maintenance & the older mom

Normally, when a woman has a baby, then toddler, she strives for (longs for, maybe?) more ease in her personal daily routine. And if you're also lazy, like me, that means easier hair, flatter shoes, comfier clothes, backpack, less gym rat more a stroller-stroller etc. Anything that lets you be wash and wear, and able to catch a fleeing kid. Less need for upkeep, for at least a little while in the early years while your body recovers from pregnancy, childbirth and perhaps nursing. As time moves on, you add back in the nice handbag and heels if you so desire, or get those nails done - whatever makes you happy with your appearance. I looked forward to this OH SO DAMN MUCH. 

This, therefore, created a hard reality when I had a child at the start of my middle age. Middle age often brings more needed maintenance for a lot of us. More frequent trips for hair color, desperately needed gym time, better facial care, falling apart body issues, blah blah blah. And for those of us who choose or need to work outside the home, it's especially hard if you work in a job where you are expected to not wear torn yoga pants and a baseball hat. 

I was having one of my first girlfriends-only lunches the other day (since having a baby) and she, who had twins at 39, said the same thing. Pregnancy at this age is kind of hell on the body. This whole, "back to your body in 9 months" or the very longest, a year, stuff is total crap when you're our age. At least it has been our experience. She's in 'therapy' with a holistic medicine expert/nutritionist, I'm in therapy with an actual therapist and my hairstylist. And both of us have joint issues from carrying kids on our hips, up and down stairs. We're a mess, desperately trying to manage our daily lives while also trying to feel confident and good about ourselves. It's just so much harder at this age, and it's hard to give ourselves the needed time to maintain, and the necessary breaks to recover from any of it. And as a single, working mom - I'll honestly include that finding childcare and the money to do anything to take care of myself, is just even a bit harder. Add to that, how in the world would a low-income mom have any of the time or money, or just support and encouragement to do it? 

I have no words of wisdom yet, because I'm still trying to figure out how to take care of myself. But I am working on it and will post my progress. Carry on...

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