You can’t pour from an empty jug

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“You can’t pour from an empty jug”

This is one of the sayings my Grandma used to come out with. Some of her others were, “That which doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger” and “When life throws you lemons, make lemonade.” And all of them are true!

You really can’t pour from something that is empty, in other words continuing to look after everyone else without looking after yourself will leave you an empty vessel – tired, irritable and unhappy. You can’t keep giving and not replace what has been given. It is so important to remember that a little bit of self care goes a very long way. After all the in-flight safety demonstrations always say put your own oxygen mask on first before helping anyone else.

So why can this make us feel so guilty? Maybe it’s because I’m a Mum? After all they pass you the bundle of guilt that goes along with the baby as soon as it’s born! Or is it just that I have been brought up to put others before yourself?

This is something I have been asking myself a lot recently. Since Charlie’s accident, or the Bearded One’s Attempt to Fly as it’s known in our house. I have been doing a lot of ‘looking after’. Charlie, obviously, the kids, my business, his business, our finances, the chickens, the cats, extended family… the list goes on. And that’s fine I’m really not complaining. I am happy to do all of this, it’s my life I’m looking after.

Or is it? I have struggled to make time for myself in all of this and that is neglecting an important part of my life – Me. I have felt incredibly guilty about having time away from home or work. No-one else makes me feel this way, I am more than capable of doing it all by myself, but I am learning to be kinder to myself. To lower the somewhat unachievable expectations I have of myself and to allow myself to just be. I’m even scheduling it in to my day now.

I am getting up half an hour earlier so I can have a peaceful cup of coffee reading and planning my sewing projects.

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Yes I am going to make time to sew just for me, something I rarely have a chance to do. Well I say that but it’s up to me isn’t it. How I decide to spend my time is, up to a point, my decision. So I have decided to allow myself some time during my week to sew for me. It might not be every week and that’s OK.

This is me giving myself a hug and saying “it’s alright to leave the dishwasher for a couple of hours. It’ll still be there when you get back. Now why isn’t that collar sitting right? And how are you going to fix it?”. We can be a best friend to ourselves or our own worst critic and I know I’d much rather have more friends, even if it’s just me.

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Now as we all know sewing feeds the soul. So I am going to fill my soul/vessel with sewing projects this year.

And this is my list of sewing projects so far. Or my #Sew9for2018 if you’ve been following this on instagram.

  • A white linen shirt. Oversized of course.
  • A pair of Hero Trousers with a front fly this time
  • A new pair of Rosalind PJ’s
  • A swimming costume that will cope with my capacious bosoms.
  • The ultimate, classic shirt waister dress
  • A new Winter coat
  • Some training gear – running leggings and a vest. Does that count as 2?
  • A super comfy hoodie for my inner teenager.
  • My daughter’s Prom dress

Pictures and plans on all of the above will follow…

Are you being kind to yourself? Do you find it a struggle and if so how do you tell yourself it’s OK?

I hope you have a friend in you.

Happy Sewing

Jules x

14 thoughts on “You can’t pour from an empty jug

  1. So glad you’re taking time for yourself. I think a lot of us are “givers” and nurture-ers from a young age and somehow we internalize taking care of others before we take care of ourselves. Looking forward to seeing your make9 projects!

  2. Yes i constantly struggle to find time for myself. Again like you i feel that its my responsibility to do everything. But for now weekend naps mean my time to sew. I get 1.5 hours on saturday and sunday to sew. My husband still complains because i have yet to manage a date night in 3 years, lol. Babysitters are hard to find, well ones i trust, lol. But i agree finding time for youself is important!

  3. This so true. I end up feeling quite resentful which doesn’t help anyone….food for thought indeed.

  4. Love your blogs – you speak so much sense – enjoy the sewing looking forward to seeing the pictures👍🏼

  5. I was in hospital for four months last year. Can’t get my sewing mojo back so this will help a lot – have quite a lot of me-time but healing a knee fracture means I can’t sit for very long. Need some inspiration and you have delivered as ever!! Thank you and hope 2018 delivers everything you hope for.

  6. You are so very right. I’m feeling a bit empty jug-like at the moment! I hope you manage to fit in that all important sewing time for yourself. x

  7. Yes, very wise words. It is even difficult to find ” me time” even when you are well beyond retirement age, people and family think that your days are like elastic. A refreshing nights sleep is also important.

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