A year and a half after having my child, I was a mom I didn’t want to be. Exhausted all of the time, feeling lost and no longer knowing who I was, and unhappy with the fact that I hadn’t lost the baby weight.

Before I became a mom, fitness was a part of my daily life and was crucial in how I felt about myself, both physically and mentally. Even while I was pregnant, I was making sure I was walking every day and eating right. As excited as I was about becoming a mom, I wasn’t prepared for the reality! Just like that, once my kid was born, I was no longer “Kristin” who had her own likes, hobbies, etc.. I was now “Mom” whose time was not her own and this adjustment was difficult. I not only felt lost and depressed, I felt very alone. I felt like I was only “mom.” I was handling everything that came along with my new role- the incessant house cleaning, laundry, managing the bills, all of the family appointments all while trying to manage my career!

Where did I fit in?

HOW could I possibly fit anything for me in the midst of all that?!

I knew I had to do something.

So, I started with something I missed from my BM (before mom) period. I figured if I started running again, I could start feeling like myself again, plus, it would help me finally fit into my old clothes again.

I tried, I really did. A few times in fact. But I kept letting my excuses of being too tired and not having time get in the way and as a result, I lost motivation.

I continued to let my excuses win again and again, until I couldn’t let them win anymore. They weren’t getting me anywhere. In fact, I felt worse because I felt like I was giving up on myself and the person I wanted to be, for myself, my tiny human, and my husband. So, I wrote down my “why” so I could focus on those to keep me going on the days I wanted to give up. If I wanted to have the energy to keep up with my kid, if I wanted to be healthy and give myself the best chance possible to see him grow up, and if I wanted to set a good example for him, I needed to keep going.

Once I started making that time for myself, I started to feel like myself again. I had energy, more confidence, and started to remember who I was. With the added energy I had, I was able to make the time to do the things I liked again and start to find my way back to who I was, but also who I was now AM (after mom). I also had more energy to keep up with my son and feel confident on date nights with my husband again (plus be able to stay awake for them!).

I am a better mom, a better wife, because I prioritized myself too. There is a great quote about how you can’t pour from an empty cup…and it’s true. We can only give so much if we don’t also give to ourselves.