I love being a mom and a wife. It was a dream I had that I am now living. Let me tell you, the reality is a lot different from the dream . . . but I wouldn’t trade my messy, beautiful life in for anything.
I’ve been a mom for almost 5 years now, and when I look back on my journey, I realized I lost myself at around year 2.5. I was pregnant with my second, my daughter was in the midst of the terrible twos/threenager stage, and I didn’t know who I was anymore. I was a mom, I was a wife, I was a homemaker, but could that really be all? Where did my interests come into play? My goals for my personal life? Did they exist anymore? Not really. Probably because I forgot to make them.
I had a hard time adjusting to life with two kids. I felt even more divided than I did before, and I was exhausted. I loved my kids and was so happy I was able to stay home with them, but there needed to be a shift. Looking back, I had no idea how badly I needed something for myself. Something that I could work on and succeed. I needed to find myself and who I wanted to be again. I wish I had realized this sooner.
One day in February 2017, I was talking to a group of girlfriends about first birthday parties. Our second babies were about the turn one and we were bouncing dates and theme ideas off of one another. I’m a natural born party planner and devoured every bit of the conversation. I loved the creativity a party brings, and how it gives me a project to work on and bring to life. A girlfriend was struggling with her party, and I took it upon myself to throw some party ideas and links to purchase some cute decor I found on a Google Slides doc and sent it her way. She loved it. She was a full-time working mom and had zero time to plan her daughter’s party. I had captured her vision in a unique way, and she asked if I’d plan the whole party.
My dream business blossomed from that conversation. I didn’t know that naptime chat in February would lead to me feeling whole again. I launched my business, Confetti Party Plans, one week later. From there, I enrolled in an online business course, which made my former teacher heart soar, and learned how to build a website from scratch. I started planning parties and making party plans for moms in my life, and eventually for women around the world.
What would have happened if I didn’t take it upon myself to plan that party? Or if I didn’t follow through with my business course and worked toward a goal I made for myself? I’m scared to think about it.
2017 was about putting myself first. I turned another dream into a reality, I made some sacrifices along the way (R.I.P. Netflix), but I have never felt more fulfilled in my life. I am able to feed my soul in a way I couldn’t when my only focus was other people. Don’t get me wrong, my family is still my priority. There are times when I should be working on a party plan, but my son needs to snuggle a little bit longer before his nap, or my daughter is wanting some one-on-one mommy time. That will always win, especially in this season of having young kids.
2018 is the year of self-care for me. It’s the year that I allow myself to be selfish. And actually, it’s not being selfish, because working on myself makes me a better mom and wife. I need to constantly remind myself that because I am doing something for me, I am not taking away from anyone else. So far in this year of self-care, I’ve gone on girls trips, attended a personal growth conference, made time for massages, worked hard on incorporating healthy eating habits, and tried to move my body more. All things that I need to function at the level I want to function. If I take care of myself, I can take care of everybody. I’m so grateful for having learned that lesson when I did. I often wonder if I would have heard it if it came to me earlier. Probably not. I was in the right place, physically and mentally, at the right time, and man, am I so glad I took that leap.
Allison Carter is the creator of Confetti Party Plans, a party-planning resource featuring guides and checklists for themed parties. She has helped hundreds of women around the world host stress-free memorable events through the help of her creative party plans. Allison saves her clients time, money, and stress, all while highlighting how essential a plan is to success. Her creativity, strong sense of organization, and attention to detail have led to over 200 unique, and worry-free parties. She lives in Bothell, WA with her husband and two young children. Website: www.confettipartyplans.com; Instagram: @confettipartyplans; Facebook: Confetti Party Plans; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org