As an introvert, particularly INFJ, I am badly in need of some me-time. Me-time is somewhat like having a down-time. I also consider it as an act of loving myself. It allows me to deposit on my personal love bank by spending time alone, not catering to anyone’s emotional needs.
When this love bank gets full, I have more love to give to my daughter, Yesha. But when it’s depleted and have ran out of resources, it’s hard for me to be attentive to her and to be patient with her. As they say, “you cannot give what you don’t have.”
When Yesha was younger, she couldn’t understand yet my need for me-time. So it’s difficult to steal some moments with myself because she can be makulit and madaldal. The only chance that I can have was when Ebet was there to play with her and occupy her time. But when it’s just the two of us at home, the only opportunity that I had was when she’s asleep.
But now that she’s older, I told her I’m gonna need some me-time where I’m just alone in our room while having a quiet time. I actually didn’t explain the what’s and why’s of me-time, she just got it. She even told me, “mommy, I also need my me-time.” She’s also an introvert like me, thank goodness. Maybe that’s why she understood. Her own me-time includes playing alone, drawing, and writing.
I imagine it could be challenging when you have kids who are extroverted. They always wanted to engage and be with people. So they may not understand why an introvert mom would want to be alone. Geez… That could be lonely.
One introvert mom explained me-time to her kids by using an analogy. She told her children, “Mommy needs to charge, kind of like your gadgets. If I’m allowed to charge – get some uninterrupted down time – then I’m available later for play and fun times. But if you keep taking me off the charger (interrupting) when I’m still only at 2%, then I can’t get recharged properly.” That’s an effective explanation when they know the importance of charging a celfone or a tablet.
Since Yesha is also an introvert, she can find solitary activities to do on her own whenever i have my me-time. But I guess, when your kids are extroverted, you may need to plan an activity for them while you’re recharging.
For an introvert mom like me, it’s definitely worth it to discuss me-time with the kids. It will pave a way to your chance of your personal time even while they’re with you at home. Me-time can help you recharge and love yourself.
Our children deserve the quality attention that we could give. And one way to do that is by paying quality attention to ourselves as well. Don’t be guilty when you want one, because you don’t just “want” it. You also need it.