If YOU CAN'T SAVE YOURSELF HOW CAN YOU SAVE YOUR CHILDREN?
Mask on self first is aphrase obviously derived from the safety demonstration given at the beginning of each commercial flight to demonstrate the need for parents to protect themselves first from losing consciousness so that they are equipped to protect their children in turn. I have used the same metaphor countless times when speaking with women who are enduring acute stress in their lives while caring for their children. My point is that if you are not fully able to be present, awake, functioning and BREATHING then how in the world can you expect your children to function? When faced with the epic chaos from the fallout of white collar crime, moms tend to want to shut down. This is a normal reaction to a very abnormal circumstance. But shutting down is not an option. If you're not breathing chances are neither are your children.
Putting on our "masks" everyday allows us to show up for our kids. They need us to be okay even if we aren't. And chances are, you are not okay but you have a job to do and it's not okay to not be okay on the job! So, make sure your children are getting the attention and sustenance they so desperately need at this time. You can fall apart on your own time but not on theirs. I know it sounds harsh but we must teach our kids the importance of being strong in the face of adversity. The best way to teach this is to PRACTICE it. We need them to know that the hard knocks in life only make us stronger. And you know what? If you continue to do this it will become rote behavior for you. Being strong for your children will not only empower them but it will empower you as well.
You are not alone. Not for one single second. You know where to find me. I'm here. Anytime.