I was having a conversation with a friend lately, and she was telling me about her mom guilt for leaving her son in a nursery while she pursues her career. She feels bad for not spending enough time with him and finds it quite a struggle to juggle everything. Many mothers think that way, and we have to remind ourselves that being a mother is only one part of our identity, and we can have dreams and ambitions. Why should we put our needs and desires aside?
What we need is to build a village to support us. I used to have mom guilt about taking time for myself. But this year, I decided to start hiring a babysitter to take my kids for a couple of hours a week. Now I'm slowly getting used to doing things for myself guilt-free. Just the other day, I went for a haircut while my babysitter took my son to the library and dropped him off at martial arts class. No annoying kids asking you for snacks every 5 mins. No one was killing each other over a toy. No one was crying because someone got hit. I was in pure heaven! It's just me, taking a moment for myself, drinking a coffee, listening to music playing in the background and getting my hair done.
As a migrant mom, the stakes are even higher. We don't have the typical village of the extended family to help out. Instead, my husband and I have to rely on ourselves, and sometimes it can get too much. We are so exhausted that our time together means watching TV for an hour and then going to bed. Having the option of a babysitter to help us out was the best thing we could do for our sanity and our marriage, if I'm frank. I've learned that it's okay to lean on others and that we don't have to do EVERYTHING on our own to raise our kids.
Let's stop feeling bad for getting someone else to look after our kids so that we can work in peace or take a break sometimes. Instead, we have to normalize asking for help and take time for ourselves. Our wellbeing and mental health are important too, and by taking care of our needs, our family benefits because we are happy that did something for ourselves or had the time to work on our dreams, ambitions and desires.
In my recent conversation with one of the co-founders of KidSitt, a Swiss babysitting app, I had a heart-warming and sincere talk with Birte. We shared how tough it is to be a parent in a foreign country. If we didn't have the option of babysitters, we would have gone crazy. She also shared with me their two-step verification process to scan potential babysitters to make sure they are as qualified and experienced as they claim to be. As a mother, this makes me feel safe knowing that the team at KidSitt takes the time and effort to do this.
I want to be completely honest here—this not an advertisement. KidSitt did not pay me to write this blog. I'm writing this because I want to encourage mothers to not feel guilty for getting help, and at the same time, I want to help another mompreneur. So let's start asking for help and feel guilt-free to do things for ourselves and our sanity.
To learn more about KidSitt, check out their website. www.kidsitt.ch. They have kindly provided you with a 10% discount code on their subscriptions so you can try them out. Just use "marisa10" at checkout.
I hope you find the motivation to ask for help and get support this week because your needs matter too, mama!