I’ve been struggling with the decision to stop breastfeeding my little girl.
She’s just over 15 months, and it seems the older she gets the more she wants.
I couldn’t pin point exactly what was bothering me about it until recently when I realised that I’m actually frustrated with a much wider issue.
So let me ask you something- do you ever feel like at the end of the day ( or week, month) that there’s nothing left for you? My customers often tell me they can’t find ‘balance’ between taking care of their kids, running the house, working ( either in a job or from home) and finding time for themselves. And the problem with living in this state, when we feel like we have alllll of these things to take care of before we can take time to tend to our own wellbeing and dreams- well we miss the whole point of being alive! To have joy!
This is something I spoke about at our Healthy Kids, Happy Mums workshop.
When I take a good look at the things I’m doing, so much of it sounds fun or like things I want to do yet the actual experience of doing them feels so draining.
Why is that?
I read something last week that summed it up perfectly: Women are doing a bunch of crap we don’t want to do.
And all this stuff we don’t really want to do is taking up space in our day, but we never acknowledge that we’re doing it because we feel like it’s “just part of life”.
To give you an example, there are easily 100 ten minute tasks that we do each week like filling out paperwork for your kids daycare or school, dropping off mail, calling the plumber, doing the dishes, feeding the pets, vacuuming the floor, picking up a birthday card for your kids friend, dropping off the recycling, sending out invites to your friends baby shower, I could go on and on.
Those 100 ten minute tasks add up to about 16 hours. If you add in grocery shopping, doing the washing and cooking you’re almost at 20 hours so no wonder we feel like we can’t find balance! We have a bloody part time job we didn’t know about.
I know that the solution isn’t always as simple as saying no or delegating those tasks. For me it’s looking deeper into why all of this stuff is defaulting to me in the first place, and why I think I have no choice but to do it. I believe so much of this is a product of living in a society that teaches us ( especially mothers) that our partners/husbands and children get to decide how they want to spend their time and we fill in the gaps to make sure everyone is happy, fed, taken care of… while nobody else is doing the same for us.
I don’t have all the answers or solutions but for me it starts with an acknowledgement that as women we’ve been taught to put ourselves last. And from there, I can make an intentional choice about what I CHOOSE to take on, and what I decide to let go of or delegate out.
So, what does all of this have to do with breastfeeding?
Well, when I’m taking on all this extra stuff ( that I don’t acknowledge I’m spending time on), it keeps me constantly moving, and in an overall state of dissatisfaction. Which is why I think I was feeling so frustrated about “having to” breastfeed Luca. And it wasn’t that at all.
When i’m feeding I really appreciate the moment of stillness that It allows me to have. When I’m feeding I can’t do anything else but sit and bond with my little girl. But when I add in my part time job of stuff I don’t really want to do, then I feel like there’s no time for stillness, and end up frustrated when my baby is crying for it.
I’d love to know what this post brings up for you? Is there crap that you’re currently doing that you really don’t want to anymore? What have you discovered about yourself in this area?Tell me in the comments!