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Here's What I Think of Selfish Moms

Smiling young woman in bathtub reading book
Photograph by Alliance - Fotolia

Dear Selfish Mama,

As I write this letter to you, I’m hoping that my child doesn’t wake up from her nap. There was a time when I felt guilty for feeling this way, but not anymore, girl. Naptime is a mini slice of heaven in my world. Naptime is like consuming a delicious cheesecake that, instead of putting pounds on your hips, makes you lose weight.

I love naptime.

I also love traveling without my child and, if an exotic vacation isn’t available, shoot, I’ll take a solo trip to Target.

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I realize that I’m not like many mothers. While I adore motherhood and take so much pride and joy in raising my daughter, I also really need to to focus on me. A lot. Some may call it selfish, and I’m okay with that. The reality is this: many hard-working mamas come off as selfless because they give up so much of themselves to raise the kids. But guess what? That’s just an appearance.

While we fake the funk nicely, deep down inside, in the depths of our souls, we are still pretty focused on ourselves. And you know what? That’s okay!

It’s okay if you’re excited that naptime has rolled around so that you catch up on a book you’ve been trying to read for five months. Here's a short survey to determine whether you're selfless—or selfish, like me.

  • Have you already begun envisioning what your older daughter’s room will be turned into once she moves out for college?
  • Do you hide in the back seat of your car just so you can grab a few moments of solitude while giggling over texts with your best friends?
  • Do you ignore the kids section of the store and head straight to the jewelry department to spend your entire paycheck on pretty baubles that you probably don’t need but want to buy anyway?

I say, "You go, girl!” It is my belief that more mamas should have selfish moments. Why shouldn’t we? Why does society put us on guilt trips when we want to do things for ourselves? Why do we send ourselves on that trip?

I wasn’t always this way. There was a time when I wouldn’t dare leave my child with anyone. I wouldn’t travel without her. I wanted to experience all of her firsts. I went above and beyond to ensure that her complete and utter happiness and comfort was ALWAYS a priority. I didn’t care what others thought. I did it out of love. And I was miserable. I went through a wave of unhappiness because, while I was such a dedicated mother, I was a miserable me.

Balance, y’all. Balance is the name of the game and, unfortunately, I just can’t give my ALL to my child. Sorry, not sorry. I need to keep something to myself.

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I need to sneak away and remember the person that I am and the person that I want to be. I realize that every mother may not feel this way, and that’s okay. But to my fellow selfish mamas, may you continue to thrive in raising your children while also continuing to focus on you. If even just part of the time.

Love,

A Fellow Selfish Mama

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