When my teens were little kids I was an Army wife. I lived far away from my family in Oklahoma. My then husband deployed to Iraq just after my oldest turned three and my youngest was six months. After three months of training and not getting to see each other he left on a plane and landed in the desert. Our communication was super limited. Maybe one call a week, emails were far between, and I was left to my own life it felt like. I started to get down on myself, depressed and downright angry that he left me with these two kids to do all the parenting. (I still feel the same way today when my husband goes to work!)
One day I realized I wasn’t taking care of myself. I was not getting enough sleep. My time wasn’t my own. Then I had an idea. What if I got ready every day? Would that change my behaviors?
I started small. First I set an alarm to wake me up before my kids naturally woke up. By setting that early alarm I was able to have time to shower and get ready.
This was the beginning of my morning routine. And I am here to tell you 14 years later, I am still doing it. Depending on where I am in the year, I wake up earlier and work out or I stay snuggled in bed and sleep in a tiny amount.
Currently I am not waking up earlier to work out… It’s too dark and too cold. My motivation to workout early shifts when Daylight Savings Time hits in November.
- 5:50am: Wake up, shower and get ready
- 7am: Family Prayers, goodbye to kids (school) and Scott (work)
- 7:30am: Get little kids breakfast if they aren’t already eating. Get little kids ready for the day
- 9:20am: take Claire to Preschool (Tuesday & Thursday)
- 9:30-11:20am: Play with Oliver (& Claire) and pick up from the morning rush.
- 11:45am: Lunchmaking time
This is a very loose schedule. Some days Claire had preschool, some days the kids have distance learning at home. We have a scheduled play date with our best friends once a week. Sometimes we have an appointment or I have a meeting or Zoom call. But most mornings look like this.
The one thing that doesn’t change is getting in the shower between 5:50 and 6am each morning. Even when I am waking up early to workout.
I want to challenge you if you are feeling in a bit of a funk with this new year starting and want to make changes, getting up and getting ready will give you a new lease on life.
I feel completely unproductive when I don’t get up and get ready. I feel like I have lost my morning and wasted time. Which is why I am up and ready for the day every day. I have heard people say that it isn’t authentic for me to show up with make-up on and my hair done to everything. But really, that is my most authentic self. It makes me feel good. Anyone else?