Despite the number of years I’ve been a mother and a wife, I hardly ever think of myself that way. I am always those things after I am me. Even when I needed to stop practicing law in order to stay sane, I never thought of myself as a mother. I was always first me.
So it was surprising to watch myself last summer when we were together with the kids and grandchildren, and then again at Christmas when everyone was here and at my parents’ house with the extended family. I allow myself to get so caught up in what needs to be done that I don’t think about myself or take any time for me. It feels like it would require just too much effort to go against the flow. And to be clear, it’s not like anyone’s asking me to do what I’m doing. But the result is that I go days and even weeks without refueling with time to myself. And then I don’t enjoy things as much as I could if I could find a middle ground.