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Putting it into practice
I was planning on publishing an interview withabout her wonderful new book, Real Self-Care today. I read a large chunk of the book while I was getting my hair “done” (sidenote who came up with that phrase because it’s weird and I dislike it) a month or so ago and as I was reading, sent my cousin multiple photos of passages that spoke to me. Alongside one photo I wrote, “Everyone needs this book” because everyone really does. Pooja’s focus on internal values and boundaries—as they pertain to self-care—completely transformed how I view #selfcare. It’s not escapism. It’s not self-optimization. It’s a radical excavation of self-identity. And so much more! Which Pooja will explain far more insightfully in the context of our interview.
But this week had other plans for me.
The week was not set up for success for a variety of reasons. On my google calendar, this week is blocked off in pink and the “event” is “preschool closed hell.” My toddler has been home all week because his three-day-a-week preschool is affiliated with the nearby university and it’s their spring break. Our go-to sitter is traveling and was only available on Monday. On Tuesday, the toddler typically goes to this adorable outdoor preschool thing, so I was counting on two days of childcare versus my usual five days of childcare to complete all of my newsletter reading, writing, and editing as well as keeping up with Momfluenced promo stuff (podcasts, interviews, social media shit, EMAILS). 1
On Monday, I worked, my big kids went to school, and my toddler’s babysitter took him to a library and everything should’ve been fine but it was also a Monday so there was that AND it was the first Monday following the time change so zombie vibes abounded.
On Tuesday, the toddler’s outdoor preschool was cancelled due to a snowstorm. My other kids’ school was also cancelled because of the very same snowstorm! So I worked (badly) in shitty 20 minutes increments and parented (badly) all day long. The toddler vomited. Then spiked a fever. Brett and I ended the day eating cold mac ‘n cheese on the couch in a sort of fugue state.
Today is Wednesday and guess what? Power lines are down near the big kids’ school which means another day of cobbled together childcare. My toddler is mostly better. I can hear him haphazardly slamming a door (I think it’s a door but I can’t be sure because I have my earplugs in) upstairs which means his energy is almost back to baseline chaos.
We all leave for a family ski trip on Thursday. That’s tomorrow. I haven’t packed. I just got an email about a thing I’m coaching for my daughter’s class and the email notified me that I had forgotten to respond to an earlier email and also that I would miss a meeting because of my failure to respond to that first email. This morning I wailed to the oldest kid, “Can you feed your brother? Do I have to BEG for help?!” and snapped at my middle kid when she returned from sledding sulky and ready to complain about something one of her brothers did, “I am working and have no time for kid fights today.” I’m a perfect parent.
A cursed thought ran through my mind as I clicked “respond” on an email (only to not respond to the email) that maybe creating an email draft IS A SYSTEM THAT WILL WORK TO REMIND ME TO RESPOND. IT IS NOT A SYSTEM. There is a mysterious yellow patch on a [white] rug that I don’t want to deal with and no, I do not know where the dino stuffie with the open mouth is and yes I hear you that you want to wear the blue snowpants later so I shouldn’t touch them and I have no clue if this is dirty or clean laundry but I definitely need to drink more water but I resent my very thirst as being yet another thing I must attend to.
Next week I (goddess willing) will have childcare and will be able to finishing editing Pooja’s and my interview, but in the meantime, here’s a passage from Real Self-Care for us all.
Rest is the place from which we derive physical and emotional energy, and energy is power. I think of rest as more of a stance, than any one particular action. So, when we decide to rest, in whatever capacity that is, it’s a single action that pushes against the social forces demanding time, energy, and attention. Choosing rest is a revolutionary act.
When I first started writing this newsletter, I said to myself, “It’ll be my full-time job once it pays enough,” but it quickly became my full-time job simply because researching, writing, ad-minning, interviewing, and publishing three times a week is a full-time job, regardless of whether or not the pay is commensurate with the work. If you’re anything like me, your inbox is probably already flooded with newsletters, both paid and free, but if you find yourself regularly opening this newsletter and finding it valuable, your financial support makes the consistent work necessary to keep this newsletter going feasible. THANK YOU to everyone who already supports me with their paid subscriptions, and of course, if it’s out of the budge for any reason, please email me and I’ll provide a comp, no questions asked.
Until March 23rd, I’m offering a 20% off annual subscriptions sale - I hope you’ll consider!