Mother Teresa is credited with one of my favorite touch stones:

“To keep a lamp burning we have to keep putting oil in it.”

Makes sense, yes?

Then why do we Moms have such a hard time putting oil in our lamps? Why do we feel guilty when we take care of ourselves? Why do we give up so many of the things we enjoy in the name if being a good mom?

Because it’s what we think we’re supposed to do. I’ve got news for you, it’s the fast track to Mom burnout!

The older I get, the more I realize just how true it is – I need that oilSo, I’m trying really hard to put oil in my lamp.

I made a decision last week that I was going to book club this month. The past year or two my attendance has been intermittent, at best. Every month it seemed to fall the same week as something, or worse, two somethings and next thing I knew it was book club that got sacrificed. This month – no more! I was going come hell or high water.

I RSVP’d, told my hubby, and dove into the book.

Inevitably, it fell the same week as #3’s three night soccer ID Camp. Aaaarrggg!!!! I held firm; I was going to book club!

Last night was the night and despite my family’s lack of enthusiasm, I went to book club.

And I’m sooooooo glad I did.

They say girl time is good for the soul…

I’m here to tell you, it’s 100% true.

Why?

There’s good food, you know girl food – salads, cheese, veggies, fruit; there’s good wine and there’s good conversation. And I get to enjoy it without my kids and husband!

In just a couple of hours we can cover everything from our husbands’ meds, our kids’ hygiene (or lack of), our health scares, our sassy kids, our sick parents, our eating habits, concerts and girls weekends,  vacation homes, kid battles and of course a few books.

Not only can we talk about all that and more, we do it freely. These ladies get me!  They hug me despite the fact we haven’t seen each other in months. They laugh at my jokes. They read my blog. They remember things about me that I’ve forgotten I told them. They live my life but with different actors. They understand the struggle of finding dirty socks in every corner of the house.

And there’s no judgment. Not a bit. None.

Just the opposite, there’s total acceptance… a rare find in the Mommy judging world. 

So I’m going to keep going to book club. I’m going to keep going to the neighborhood ladies happy hours. I’m going to keep going out with my high school besties.

Because I need that oil!

Because it makes me a better Mom. It makes me a better wife. It makes me a better friend, sister, niece, aunt, co-worker, employee, neighbor, volunteer…it makes me a better person.

All because my lamp is full.