In this social media age of Instagram husbands and everyone doing what they feel is right, the pressure on people (like myself), who do not have their shit together, seems to increase tremendously. All the posts, that talk about taking the world into your own hands and making your life take a 360 degree turn, just put me into deeper depression. In this post I am going to talk about how to take baby steps towards internal peace.
I graduated from LUMS in 2009 and for one reason or the other never entered the job market (the biggest regret of my life if I must say). Though I would not change the way I spend time with my kids or cater to their needs, I could have managed it differently but again circumstances don’t always allow you. No matter how cool all those quotes suggesting to turn your world upside down sound, life does happen to everyone and for someone like myself relationships matter more than my peace (how I want to change that).
When we moved to Toronto last year, I wanted to start anew. I had plans about how I’d just get a job and everything will fall into place. Only to realize that without any sort of job experience it was too naive to assume that I would have jobs lined up for me. I went through a phase of depression, struggling with the guilt that I had wasted prime years of my life raising kids. DO NOT EVER GIVE IN TO SUCH GUILT. If you are a working mom, do not give in to the guilt that you are neglecting your kids. Only you can know your situation best. Do not compare yourself to the picture perfect families out there (I used to do that and nothing positive ever comes out of that).
So I realized that to enter the job market, I would either need internships/volunteer work or a refresher course to polish my skills. Someone mentioned continuing education courses of University of Toronto and that is where I came across the course that gave me a positive outlook after a really long time. The course was about social media and I had always been interested in blogging so I decided to give it a try. I haven’t been more intimidated in my life than I was at the first day of my class. There were about 30 students in my class, all working for PR in one way or the other and there I was, a stay at home mom of two, who hadn’t seen this many people in a professional setting in over 9 years. But the instructor was extremely helpful and supportive who made me feel like I wasn’t just another number in the class.
I used to get 3 hours once a week where I did not have to think about looking after my kids, be on my own and do something for myself. Those 3 hours made me a much better person. I used to get back home at 10 pm, many days kids would still be up because they are used to sleeping with me, but at the end it was all worth it.
Take baby steps towards reaching your peace. The rush, the guilt, the competition won’t lead you anywhere. Do not let yourself burn out trying to achieve too many things at the same time. Prioritize everything in your life and move on from there. What might be working for your best friend might not be the best solution to your problems so do not copy/paste.
Remember to do small things for yourself that make you happy. It could be as insignificant as making yourself a cup of tea or reading a chapter from your favorite book. For me, putting makeup on can do wonders to my mood. So put that lipstick on and do not worry about looking like a fool all dressed up going to get some milk from the grocery store.