Finding out your child has a disability is stressful in itself. Living day to day with disability can be even more stressful and can affect the whole family. Keeping balance in your life can keep you from feeling overwhelmed.
But, finding time for yourself can sometimes feel like an impossible task! You know that you must care for yourself so that you are healthy enough and strong enough to care for your family, but how can you do this?
Here are a few ways to take time for yourself:
- Have a relative or caregiver stay with your child while you take a shower or maybe even a bubble bath.
- Have lunch with a friend while your child is in school or while a caregiver is available to stay with your child.
- While your child is taking a nap, take a 15-30 minute nap yourself – you can set an alarm so you don’t sleep longer than they do! Or, read a book, visit by phone with a friend or loved one, have a relaxing cup of coffee or tea, draw, crochet, knit, sew…just do something that is fun and relaxing.
- Join a parent group. It could be one with just parents of children with disabilities, or it could have a different focus altogether. How about a book club? Some groups meet for lunch or dinner at different places and times. Look for one that interests you in your area. Check out Connecting with Other Parents on this website for more ideas.
- You can find a lot of groups on social media sites such as Meetup, Facebook, etc. Also take a look at Find Services, Groups & Events for additional groups.
- Meditation might also be helpful.
- How about date night with your spouse or significant other? (Yes, it can be done!)
- Join a gym or take a class on a topic that interests you. How about taking a yoga or zumba class? You can do this while your child is in school or when a caregiver is available to stay with your child.
- Arrange for help to assist you in taking your child to a park. While your helper is with your child, take advantage of the quiet time to read a book, listen to music or even get in a little exercise time for yourself.
Be sure to check out our Family Support page for more options on taking care of yourself. Don’t know anyone who can help take care of your child while you relax for a while? Take a look at Take Time Texas for information about respite and a searchable database of respite providers in your area.
It can be tough to change your routine or scary to try something new, but making time to take care of you is worth the effort! Just remember – you (and your family) are worth it!