Last week I had the chance to do something I've never done before in 9 years. I was in my house. By myself. Not just for a couple of hours, but for 5 whole days!
It was blissful. I cleaned. I organized. I scrapped. I had lunch and dinner with friends. And I shopped.
My girls are lucky enough to have not one set, but two sets of amazing grandparents who think they hang the moon and try their hardest to spend as much time with them as possible despite our distance. My parents started taking the girls for a week last year and things went so well that they signed up for another stint this year. The girls count down the days and my parents don't have the fun ruiners around – the parents!
This meant Terry and I had 2 full weekends together. Much needed and much appreciated.
You see, I'm one of those mothers that as long as my children are in good hands then I have no trouble leaving them. There I said it. It doesn't make me a bad mother, or a disconnected mother, or a selfish mother.
I love them more than life, but want my girls to know it's ok for their mom and dad to spend time together without them. I want them to know that it's ok to take time for yourself and do something you want to do once in a while. And I want them to know that even when mom and dad aren't around, you're fine and will probably end up having MORE fun with loved ones.
I think this is something that parents, especially mothers, beat themselves up about. That somehow if you aren't with your children every second of every day of every year that it makes you less of a mother. That if you take time for yourself, even just a brief afternoon, you are beyond selfish and your kids will be harmed by this. That if you and your husband spend an evening together to reconnect you are taking quality time away from your children. I find it absurd.
I find it the opposite. It doesn't mean I don't get guilt about it, especially when I get the judgemental look from other mothers, but I get over that quickly.
My girls know that mommy goes to bunco, she'll run errands solo, she goes on dates with daddy and when given the chance will appreciate time alone in her house. They are no worse for the wear, but probably more independent, and definitely soak up the alone time with grandparents and daddy too!
My husband and I had 2 great weekends to reconnect, talk about things that normally are saved for the 8 o'clock hour, and just enjoy being around each other. We like being together and have a great time and we soaked up every minute of it. We go away semi regularly and I think that has been one of the best things in our marriage-taking time for each other and making it a priority.
I had 5 great days to get my house and head together. I regrouped, ready to tackle the month of August, ready to tackle my new found weekday single motherhood, ready to tackle the giant and rewarding job of "Mom". I'm more patient this week and ready to endure countless Barbie fashion shows and concerts!
I put this message out there because I had a long lunch discussion about this while the girls were gone with someone without kids and his big question was: "Why on earth do you mothers beat yourselves up over taking time for yourself? It's crazy."
Kind of off topic, but still family related, I have a positive thoughts/prayer request. I normally don't put things like this here, but this is a big deal and I would love all the prayers I can get. My sister-in-law found out last month that she has breast cancer. After going to the doctor yesterday to determine the plan, they decided to do a double mastectomy in 2 weeks. They are all confident in the decision, but I can't even begin to imagine the stress and fear they must be going through right now. She is an amazing woman that I admire greatly and hoping and praying all goes well.