When you are a stay-at-home, hands-on, first-time mom to a Velcro baby, you probably get me. Your arms ache from holding him day and night. You adjusted sleeping with a 10-kilo weight on your chest where your baby sleeps. You miss preparing and eating an actual meal with both of your hands. You know no luxury of deciding what to do on nap time — he needs to stick to you in order to sleep. When he sleeps, you can’t move. You probably have your work on your smartphone, the only thing you can manage to operate single-handedly while pinned down on bed. I’m writing this lying in bed, cradling and nursing my son.
Constant need to nurse, want to be carried, sticks like a glue, light-sleeper, demanding, highly sensitive — these will probably spread yourself too thin, to the point of breakage.
I call it melt-down. I didn’t keep tabs how many times I snapped and broke down, feeling drained. But tomorrow’s another day for motherhood.
Some nights I can’t even brush my teeth, more so to shower. So when I do get my elusive break…
…here’s how I re-center myself and elevate my me-time and make it more special.
In the morning
Ideally in the morning, I jot down my random, scattered thoughts and ideas on a piece of pretty paper and gold-inked pen. It’s an incredibly effective way to release the noise in my head, and organize my thoughts. I feel calm when I can clearly read what I need to achieve. There’s a magical, fulfilling feeling when I’m able to tick off items on my to-do list.
In the afternoon
Probably my most fancy me-time is sipping a hot cup of mother’s milk tea with a book on hand. Currently on my reading-list is The Nesting Place. It’s teaching me that “someday” is now. Creating a beautiful home now, wherever we are.
At late night
Recently my son is forming a sleeping routine. By nine, he doze off while sleep-feeding. He sleeps lightly with a few tossing and turning, before finally having a deep sleep. That’s around eleven at night. When I successfully avoided to sleep myself, I sneak out of the room and into the bathroom.
Yellow lights and warm water puts me in a calm, relaxed mood. I elevate my routine and add a skin conditioner after my body wash or body soap. I’m currently using Nivea In-Shower Skin Conditioner. It’s creamy lotion formula activates as it interacts with water. It feels luxurious for me like treating myself to a body oil and body lotion in one. I use this quiet time as a therapeutic treatment to soothe my aching body and anxious mind.
How about you ladies, what do you incorporate to elevate your daily routine and to keep sane?
On normal days, I stay at home and juggle about two things in my life: taking care of my baby and trying to get work done. Yes, this means that sometimes I even had to skip taking care of some of my basic needs (read: no shower). Recently though, since I acknowledged that self-care should be a regular part of my life, I keep my stress level in check and try to squeeze in some time in a day to attune to myself and do some self-care.
Some of the most effective for me are: 1) deep breathing— helps me to calm down and regulate my heart rate; 2) visualization or “guided imagery”— closing my eyes, picturing myself relaxing in a beach with its blue waters instantly transports me to that serene place; 3) mindful snacking— hard-boiled egg or wheat peanut butter sandwich helps me get through a stressful moment; 4) sipping a hot cup of mother’s milk tea while jotting down my thoughts or making lists— helps de-clutter my brain to regain a clearer perspective; 5) kissing my husband— helps my brain release happy hormones; 6) listening to my favorite music— especially songs about love makes me loosen up and gets me so giddy; 7) watching a funny video— there’s nothing a good laughter can’t cure; 8) playing with my #LittleAdamBryce— seeing the spark in his eyes and the way he smiles when he discovers something new is incredibly priceless!
On other days though, about twice to thrice a month, I get to go out (or at least I try to) on my mommy’s day out. Other than meeting up and chatting the day away with friends, feasting on comfort food or discovering what’s new in our neighborhood or in the metro, I opt for some r&r and do some pampering activities.
Ideally I want my monthly body massage sessions but since last year when I was pregnant and until now that my boy is ten months old, I still haven’t gone to a spa. It would take me about half a day to be done, and of course that is not feasible for now since I directly breastfeed my baby.
So my most favorite pampering activity and I suppose, the most usual amongst girls and moms like me is— manicure and pedicure.
I was scheduled for my usual pedicure session at a local salon in our town, when I got an invitation to try Nail.a.holics Nail Salon & Spa. Luckily they have a branch nationwide and the one that is closest to me is in SM Bacoor.
A foot spa, manicure and pedicure just right on schedule is an offer I wouldn’t pass up on, so off we go to the salon!
Consider this the best excuse to give yourself that much-needed day of pampering.
Mark October 17, Monday on your calendars — because from 10 AM to 12 noon, you can head over to any Nailaholics branch nationwide and get a relaxing manicure and hand massage for FREE.
For many, a trip to the nail salon is a rare indulgence. All too often, work and the daily grind of busy schedules keep them from getting the necessary “me-time” that everyone craves and needs. But as Nailaholics celebrates and takes part in the country’s first ever #NationalPamperingDay, the brand hopes to remind everyone that it’s OK to take some time for yourself and indulge.
Perhaps no other nail salon in the country is better known for having perfected the art of a quick, urban pampering the way Nailaholics has. Their interiors are inviting, their service is efficient, and the promise of getting whisked away from realities of looming deadlines, to-do lists, traffic, and whatever else awaits outside the doors of this quaint Hamptons-themed escape, becomes possible— even if it’s only for a few hours.
“We get that,” says Arvin Amaro, Marketing Head. “And it’s exactly why we we’re celebrating National Pampering Day. We want to give people who need a break a quick escape where they won’t have anything to worry about. So be sure that you head over to your nearest Nailaholics branch to get pampered for free.”
SkinWhite Advanced PowerWhitening Face Cream Powder
Comes in White, Rose white, Light Beige variants.
I’m such a multi-tasker, making sure I’ve got a padded list of tasks to accomplish whenever I go out. Sometimes I do away with putting make-up on since I want to save time and just get started with my day. But sometimes I feel guilty for not putting anything on my face as a barrier from the pollution. So when I tried SkinWhite Advanced PowerWhitening Face Cream Powder, I had an a-ha moment! This best face multi-tasker compliments my busy lifestyle. It is a 3-in-1 beauty product that moisturizes, whitens and magically turns to matte powder finish! All I need is an eyebrow, and I’m out of the door in no time!
Just ensure you get the compatible shade for your skin tone, mine is in the shade of light beige. Also use sparingly since too much can make you look like a ghost! It happened to me once before. Apply it as you would a moisturizer. It’s incredibly smooth and just glides on my face. This might be the only thing you need on your makeup bag on hectic days when you don’t want to go out barefaced nor fully made up.
SkinWhite Classic Whitening Lotion SPF 10 with Light-Feel Technology
SkinWhite Classic SPF 10 now with better scent and better feel! With its new light-feel technology, this is indeed a light lotion that makes skin smoother and whiter. Its non-sticky formula, almost water-based is so easy to apply. It is formulated with vitamins that nourishes and moisturizes the skin, it is whitening, plus it has SPF to protect your skin for the sun.
I first noticed its fresh powder-like smell. And since it’s non-sticky and light lotion, I prefer applying this when I’m on the go on a quick errand outside. It has SPF 10 which is perfect when I’m not directly under the sun, but is still expose to the harmful rays from time to time, like going from one bank to the next one. It’s easy to smooth over my arms and legs, no downtime necessary to let my skin absorb it. Both the fresh scent and its light-feel texture are very favorable for me considering I’m always carrying my baby with me. No foul smell and no sticky feel!
SkinWhite Advanced PowerWhitening Lotion SPF20
It’s great that more and more skincare products are adding SPF on their formulation like this newest Power Whitening Lotion with SPF 20. This promises to protect your skin under the sun, make it visibly whiter upon first application, and nourish your skin with hydrating benefits. I have yet to religiously add this to my daily routine to see its whitening effect on my skin.
You too, can try it before you buy! Grab your free sample from SampleRoom.PH!
1.) the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.
2.) a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.
The demands of being a mom, in my case a first time mom of a now 10-month old baby, can be overwhelming, especially if you encounter things for the first time and find yourself wondering how to handle each new concern. Sometimes you feel you have little control over a situation, or you have missed to make the right decision, or simply handling your thinning patience. If the stress of rearing a child is left unchecked, it can take a toll on your health, relationships, and state of mind —eventually leading to burnout.
When you’re burned out, it’s tough to do anything, let alone look after someone else —our husbands and our children. That’s why taking care of yourself isn’t a luxury —it’s a necessity.
Taking care of yourself isn’t a luxury — it’s a necessity.
If you don’t get the physical and emotional support you need, the stress of rearing a child leaves you vulnerable to a wide range of problems, including depression, anxiety, and burnout. And when you get to that point, both you and your child you’re caring for suffer. That’s why managing the stress levels in your life is just as important as making sure your family gets the caring they need.
In my case, I took the time out and took the first step into my self-care journey.
I joined other moms who seek to pause, reflect and be in the present moment by attending Mindful Mom Retreat by Mommy Mundo.
Self-care is a call for Mindfulness.
It is to Be instead of to Do.
It is pausing, reflecting and being present in the moment.
It is a treat and responsibility to the self.
“Taking care of yourself is part of taking care of your kids.”
“To be beautiful means to be Yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept Yourself.”
~ Thich Nhat Hanh
Here are my take-away during this important event in my mommy’s day out.
Why self-care is important?
Moms are multi-taskers
Moms wear many hats
Moms are the nurturers & the family’s emotional anchor
Self-care allows us to…
recharge our body
declutter our thoughts
tune in to our needs and emotions
make the spirit catch up with the body
Practical Mindful Self-Care
BE present in the moment
Cease to OVERTHINK
OFFLINE CONNECTIONS are more important
Do not COMPARE
Choose your INFLUENCES
DECLUTTER your thoughts and emotions
Set your BOUNDARIES. Learn when to say NO
PACE each task, one day at a time
Identify matters you can LET GO of
Honor WHO YOU ARE
Self-care leads to…
…being a more loving mom and wife
…seeing life with a better disposition; clearer thoughts
…feeling “fairly treated”
…less risk of feeling “maxed out”
…being a mindful mom and living by our #mommanifesto
“When stress, tasks and life’s demands increase, so must be our mindful self-care.”
Essentially, the more you pay attention to your emotions and how you work, the better you’ll understand why you do the things you do. The more you know about your own habits, the easier it is to improve on those habits.
Thank you again to these mommies who organized this event! I’m looking forward to the next one!
Changing hair color is a simple yet great way to change or update your look!
The whole duration of my pregnancy (Which was just last year?! Amazing how time flies!), I can count through my fingers the few times I have visited a salon. First was when I had to have a pedicure for my aching toes. Second was for a haircut before my bestie Jajabink’s wedding. And lastly for a blowout for my birthday-baby shower. And these salon visits are all in Manila!
Fast-forward to today, seven months postpartum, I had a chance to finally have a hair makeover, in a trusted salon near our place in Cavite no less. Introducing, Status Hair Salon Cavite!
Status Hair Salon Citymall Anabu-Imus G/F Unit U130 Mobiles: 09228884487, 09956781636
Who knew they already have their first provincial branch. Well, I sure did not let this opportunity pass me by as my tired tresses are truly in dire need of some pampering. I was given a choice between a hair treatment (i.e. rebond, keratin, digiperm etc.) or a hair color. I chose the latter because having a gray hair runs in our family.
But since I am exclusively breastfeeding, I’m worried that the chemicals will affect my breast milk and affect my baby. I had to consult my mommy group for other moms who had hair treatments or hair color done while they are breastfeeding. I received a positive number of moms who had hair colors done while breastfeeding and they reassured that it is ok and there were no bad effect on their babies through their breast milk. Some moms even cheered for me to do it since that’s a simple pampering I can do after all the “work” we’re doing for our babies. I couldn’t agree more that we deserve some pamper-me-time in-between breastfeeding and changing nappies.