(This post is part of a 100 Blogger blog tour for the book The Declaration of You! by Michelle Ward and Jessica Swift Learn more — and join us! — by clicking here.)  This weeks theme is: -

This week, part of my self care was me NOT doing my blog post on Thursday, as originally scheduled.  Instead I spent all day playing with my kids.  We went to the park, for a walk, swimming, karate lessons, and grocery shopping.  And it was fun.  Just what I needed.  Connection to them and to nature, movement,  creating memories.

As a newly minted stay at home mom entrepreneur-1 month and counting (always an entrepreneur, just laid off from the full time job and doing my side hustle full time with the kids at home now), my self care needs and fulfillment there-of change daily.    

Today, my self-care was sleeping in a little, writing this post so I can connect to others and share some magic, and making sure I was home from 12-5pm (really, they need 5 hrs?) to have my alarm system upgraded to a radio signal so we can cancel the cable and the internet phone and I can breathe a little easier to not have the big monthly bill overhead.

My self care emcompasses so many levels: what do I need for nourishment of my soul, my spirit, my body, my belly, my mind...to feel ease and calm and peace, or as the lovely Hannah Marcotti says, space.  Most important to me lately, what  do I need to feel how I want to feel?

No matter what, my self care starts with a breath.  A deep centering breath, in and out from my nose, so deep it puffs out my chest and pushes out my belly.  So deep all the stale air trapped at the bottom of my lungs is pressed out and I get new O2 in.  So deep I crave another.

It starts with me asking myself, what's the most beautiful and needed thing I can do for myself in this moment?  Some days, I don't even ask myself this until 5pm, and thats part of the flow.  

Sometimes, self care is permission to be ok with what is.

Then, maybe I remember to 'officially' meditate, most times not....but I make movement my meditation every day, even if just for five minutes.

Since I've been home full time, I've been going on long walks through the town I live in and love, with my son smiling up at me from the stroller, and our conversation deep and delicious (mom, did you see that bird.  IT was blue!).  I notice the flowers.  I listen to music and pay close attention to my son's song choices-he loves call me maybe.  I see the world from his eyes, and my own.  Such wonderful self care.

And I continue to breathe.  And work to be present. Thats the hardest self care for me, and the most important.  To be present.  To let go of what ifs, and next week, and I have to do...

Breath gets me there.  Deep delicious breath.  

And I keep going.  And I reassess.  What do I need now?  How do I want to feel?  It changes by the minute sometimes.  I stay open to it, mostly.  And when fear rears her gorgeous head, I recognize her for the trailblazer she is...she sets me on my path.  What and where I fear, I need to go.  The ultimate self care, which isn't always easy or pretty.

Like next month...

I am taking my two sons, ages 4 and 8, across the country with me in a minivan for a month.  We have a tent, a hammock, a place to stay in Chicago and Denver, and no schedule.  Things I used to fear, I am using as guides.  I feared having no plan, next month I'm open to all possibilities.  I feared spending 24/7 time with my boys for a month with no breaks and hubby at home; next month, I throw that to the wind-connection, deep love, sharing, and exploration, are all at hand for the three of us.  I feared having no full time paycheck to support and secure us; to experience this trip, I leave the world of guaranteed paychecks and soul sucking work behind (not all work, just that work).  Fear has shown me whats really important, and Im using it as a guide to break free from my barriers and see whats on the other side.  I am caring for myself in a way that I never had the guts to before, and I am ready.