• Wednesday, April 17, 2024
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BusinessDay

Your selfcare shows you love your children

Importance of selfcare routines for physical wellbeing

Nkechi and Halima exited the high-end children’s store where they had gone shopping for their kids. With 7 children between them, shopping was a big deal and they literally planned ahead and dedicated days for the activities. Both mothers were career women who were tried hard to achieve a good work-life balance, and scheduling had helped them a lot in this regard.

The thought of supporting their spouses to give their children the best choices in life was a big motivating factor on days that work was very demanding. One of their colleagues had joked one day after seeing their shopping receipts, “you ladies don’t play oh, these your children are VIPs”. Nkechi had replied, “We are here giving away blood, sweat and tears for these children and we pray that they realize how much we love them.”

The shopping mall where the children’s store was located also had several women wellness outlets and Halima was a regular customer. Nkechi usually declined visiting any of them saying that she needed to go sort out some more things for the children. Over the past couple of weeks, Halima had observed that her friend had taken some days off work on account of ill health, and she knew that Nkechi was stressing herself more than she ought to. She decided that she would confront her on her poor self-care practices.

“Babe, do you love your children”, Halima asked her friend quietly.

“What kind of question is that one now? If I didn’t love them, would I be out here running around like this for them to make sure that they look great? Would I even be working as hard as I currently am? I think that is an insensitive question to ask”, Nkechi replied a bit angrily. What could have possessed Halima to throw such a query at her?

Read also: Selfcare is not selfish

“I don’t mean to upset you. I’m just trying to understand something. You know I love you and have only your best interests at heart. My second question is this, in what state are you most useful to your children; healthy, sick or dead?”

By this time Nkechi didn’t hold back her anger. “God forbid! I will not die. See, if anyone sent you to me today, just tell them that I’m not available for any morbid ideas or discussions. You need to check your mind and make sure you aren’t projecting any bad ideas onto me.”

Halima knew this was exactly how her friend will react but was ready for her. If she couldn’t tell her the hard truth she needed to hear, she didn’t really love her.

“Babe, I know why I’m asking you these questions. Any time we go shopping for the children, you spend in 7 figures. Your children attend the best schools. You make sure you feed them the best natural and organic food. The nannies that take care of your children are hired through a process that is more stringent than that of even multinationals.

Yet compare the level of care you give them to the one that you give yourself. You’re forever looking for the cheapest bargains when you go to buy your own clothes, you eat a lot of junk food, your skincare products are the lowest quality, you don’t exercise, you have no healthy lifestyle schedule to take care of yourself. How many times have you fallen ill in the past few weeks? Should I continue?”

“So, I’m going to ask you again, do you think that loving your children also means that you need to start paying attention to your self-care so that they have a healthy mother who is strong enough to be there for them for as long as possible?”

By this time, Nkechi’s head was bowed with a somber look at her face. She had never thought of it this way, that investing in her own self-care and wellness was a way of expressing her love for her children, not a waste of money.

“Thank you for helping me see clearly and looking out for me. I will begin to do better from now on,” she quietly said to Halima who knew that finally, her friend would take her self-care seriously.