Why I Am Putting Myself First

I thought about starting a blog many times in the past, but I never got serious about it. It felt “too done” already.  After all, I find nearly all my recipes from other people (blogs), most of my creative ideas come from other people (thank you Pinterest), and most of what I have to say has been said, written about, blogged about, shared 100 times over. My self-talk was garbage.

Who am I? 

Do you ever catch yourself saying that?

I would say it to myself constantly. Every time I would come up with something blog-worthy, I would squash it by saying, “Who am I? How am I different? Who cares what I have to share? Why would anyone read what I write?”

And then came the day. Today.

The day I sat down and began to let the words flow out of my head. I didn’t judge my words. I stopped saying, “No, you can’t do that.” Being creative is the way I found my joy. It’s the way I live in my joy. As a mother of two young children, a wife, a business owner, a woman who is trying to find her voice and share it, I need to live in my joy to function.

As a Mom I think it’s often easy to put ourselves last. After all, that’s what I learned from my mother. She always sacrificed her needs and wants for us. I love my mother very much, and I have a great relationship with her. However, it took me years of making mistakes, finding my strengths, working on my flaws and embracing them, teaching myself how to put on makeup (which I am still not good at), screaming out for attention in multiple ways in my early 20’s, battling an eating disorder, getting cosmetic surgery to “fix me”, becoming a wife, becoming a mom, finding my voice, thinking I had it figured out to only find out I didn’t, before I realized I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. I was unfulfilled. Here I was having everything I dreamt of since I was a little girl… I was married to an amazing man and I had my first baby in my arms. A daughter of all things. A daughter that I prayed for over, and over, and over again. My first baby was a girl and I felt like all my dreams had come true, except for the creative fulfillment.

Here’s a quick backstory. I moved to Los Angeles when I was 18 to pursue my childhood dream of being a working actress. I was so laser-focused on my career that no one could have told me that I would be back in Wisconsin where I grew up 12 years later not having had a single line in a major tv show or film. I worked my butt off to develop my craft, but the opportunities just weren’t coming. Some people would say I was playing the victim. That I wasn’t creating the opportunities, that it was the result of some subconscious desire for me to not succeed. And they would probably be right. However, where I am at in my life now, and looking back, I realize that in the midst of all the praying and crying and lack of opportunities, that I was given a gift. A beautiful gift. I was made a mother to a beautiful little girl. And she helped me realize that it wasn’t acting that I wanted. It was simply fulfillment. I needed to be complete before I could be a mother, a wife, a friend, a daughter, a sister.

So here begins my journey of self-worth.

The journey I have been on for 3 years. If I am being honest, though, I am really just getting started. On the surface, it’s easy to say we love ourselves. I lost 25 pounds and finally had the body I dreamt of my entire life. On the outside, I loved myself. But when I would get upset and lash out at my husband, or scream at my daughter, I hated myself. It’s easy to read a few books and have ah ha! moments left and right, but the real work begins when you begin to actually look inside of yourself and take action on changing what it is that is triggering your fears.

I will be the first to admit that I do not have it all together. No matter how it may look to the outside world, on social media, to friends, family, etc., loving myself is a daily practice. It’s hard work. But when I look at my two children and I see the life that I am molding for them, self-love is a necessity, because if I can’t practice it myself, how can I expect my two daughters to learn how to love themselves? In a world full of communication and brave “keyboard talkers” I have to prepare my daughters to know who they are. Know their truth. Stand up for who they are and learn how to unconditionally love those that show hatred.

So I am sorry, to all the mothers out there who don’t agree with this, but I will put myself first. My fulfillment comes first, then I can be present and whole for my family and friends. If you choose to not put yourself first, understand that is completely acceptable, but that is your choice. The day of the submissive housewife is over. You can’t stop this mother from pursuing her passions and creating a life she loves to live. I am ready and I am walking through this process one day at a time, but I am done saying that life is happening to me. I am removing the disempowering phrases like “I don’t know what to do” and replacing them with “Let me find what lights me up.” In my opinion, women are on their way to bring massive change to the planet and I intend to be one of them contributing.

Regina lived most of her adult life in California while pursuing her dream of being a working actress. When life blessed her with being a mother, her and her husband, Will, decided it was time to return to the Midwest, where both of them grew up. Regina returned to her home state of Wisconsin and has since added a second daughter to her family. She is extremely passionate about living a healthy lifestyle, which includes nutritious eating, meditation, fitness, and of course, coffee. Any exercise she can do with bare feet is right up her alley. She also loves to read, listen to music, experiment with baking, try all new things healthy, and has recently began her journey of becoming a certified Pilates instructor.  Regina lives in Verona with her husband and two daughters.  She can be found on Instagram and Facebook at @motivatingmomwellness.

Madison Moms Blog is written by and for moms who live in the Madison Area. We strive to connect local moms by sharing personal experiences, fun ideas and useful information as well as promoting local businesses. Our community begins online, but doesn't stop there! We offer Mom's Night Out events, play groups and other opportunities to connect offline, with and without kids.


  1. I love this. Thank you for sharing your story. I too am working to put myself first. You can’t fill other peoples cup’s if yours is empty!


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