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I got up when my alarm went off and knew in my heart today was not going to be a day I could afford to press snooze. As I was getting ready, my son called me down from upstairs with tears in his eyes. He was not feeling well and a doctor visit was in order.

My husband was off to Real Estate meetings for the day and was not able to help me with the crew this morning. I made some quick rearrangements for school drop-offs for the other kiddos and stopped to pause amongst the hustle of the moment. We only had 15 minutes to get all dressed, fed, packed up and on our way to make an 8AM tutoring time.

But I stopped to take care of myself.

I had not eaten yet, my water was not filled, and I did not know how long I was going to be out for the day. I’ve had doctor’s visits that turned into ER trips in the past and had arrived unprepared for the long haul.

Today was going to be different. I was going to be equipped.

I filled my water supply, grabbed some snacks and finished prepping my breakfast. I knew that if I did not pause for an extra five minutes to take care of myself, I would not be able to effectively take care of everyone else. They depended on me to have mental clarity and energy to safely deliver them to their destinations and prepare them for what they were needing to do.

Pausing to take care of me is not selfish. It is necessary, necessary to give me what I need so I can give them what they need.

It’s taken me many wrong turns and backseats to come to this point. As parents we’re taught to “put family first”, and while I do agree with that to an extent, what if we never, ever pause to take care of our own well-being? How can my tank or bucket be filled so I can pour out into others? Without a pause to refill, I’m simply an empty shell.

As the day went on, everyone got to where they needed to go. I was fueled and hydrated and ready to tackle the agenda and meet their needs.

Can you give yourself a gift this season that in turn gives back even greater to those around you? Will you make steps towards being okay with taking care of yourself, inside and out, so you can be effective in your calling and purpose?

I give you permission to do so. You’re worth it. You’re needed!

In case you missed it, “Take care of you so you can take care of others!”

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