Feeling Guilty for Spending Time on Me

A New Transition

After teaching for three years, I spent the past four years being a stay at home mom and taking care of my two daughters who are now 2 and 3 ½  years old. I spent every day,all day with them. I never felt guilty about running or working out at the gym because I saw it as my time. I needed a break once in awhile to take care of myself so I could be the best mom for them.

10414409_696441230740_8630848770996864371_n

Just this past August, I started my journey back to teaching. I am teaching fifth through eighth grades history, English, and reading in a small Christian school. My oldest daughter is in preschool at my school, and my youngest in in daycare. I went from spending all day with them to being away from them most of the day.

I have peace knowing God called me back to teach at the school this school year. I am struggling with some feelings of guilt. The guilt isn’t because I am working or because they are not with me. I am away from my girls from 7:30 A.M. until 4:00 P.M. Monday -Friday. I come home and make dinner for everyone, and then I am off to the gym or the trail for a run.  This takes another one to two hours away from my family.  It is so hard for me to feel like it’s ok for me to do this. It is a priority for me, and I question if it should be.

I Have to Be My Best for Them

Then, I think about why I run and workout. I do this so that I can remain mentally and physically healthy. It is a form of worship when I take care of the body God has given me. This time I spend on me is a sacrifice at the time, but it will be worth it. It helps me live longer, be healthier, and helps my mind stay strong. I am a better mom when I take care of myself. When I get back from my workout, I have about an hour to spend with my girls before they go to bed. Some of that hour includes their bath time and bedtime routine. It’s so hard for me to think it’s fair for them. They should be able to spend more time with their mommy. I have changed the way I do some things, so that I take advantage of every moment I have with them.

Different Quality Time

Dinner time has now turned into cooking lessons, when I have lots of little hands helping me in the kitchen now. The car rides to school and  home are spent with no music, but lots of conversations and storytelling. I even take them to my classroom with me sometimes if I have work I need to get done. They like to be with me and read books. My work time has been postponed until after the kids are in bed or I wake up earlier to get things done. I am more intentional about the quality time I am spending with them, and our weekends are spent with a lot more cuddle time than before. We appreciate the weekends and  minutes in between our busy schedules.

It’s Okay to Take Care of You!

I am taking care of me so that I can take care of my family. It’s not always easy, and sometimes I feel like I can’t justify it. It’s about balance, but it’s important. I want to be healthy so I can be an example to them, and live a long life to watch them grow. This may mean sacrificing a few hours, but could be in exchange for extra years of life with them on Earth.  It’s okay to take care of you,  it’s more than okay, it’s important!

Do you ever feel guilt when you take time or spend money on your health journey?