It had been quite awhile that I had left my children for more than a day. Minus a night here and there, it had been over 2 years that I had been away from them for more than 24 hours so I was long overdue. In fact, I was so long overdue that I scheduled a work conference for 2 nights and then decided to leave to visit a friend another 3 nights a week and a half later. Just got back and it’s that honeymoon where you’re just glad to be home.
Boy, did I get some tight hugs this afternoon, followed by Anna talking my ear off! I loved that after the first night I was away the first time, Brody told me his dad that “he actually kind of missed me”! This afternoon, I got a hug that he wasn’t letting go of and another sweeter, tighter one at bedtime. They stayed busy and happy while I was away, as did I. But, we were all so excited and grateful to be together again.
That’s what getting away does, renews your appreciation for each other. The change of scenery and routines is good for kids, as well as moms. Day in and day out, we take each other for granted. Don’t get me wrong. We fully love each other each and every day but I needed this quick break to regroup. Sometimes it seems like more trouble than it’s worth to leave and get away. But, leaving just for a bit, whether it be a walk or a trip, gives a mental break and energizes the love.
One of my first blog posts focused on the need for mothers to take time for themselves. More and more, I have heard friends talk about this lately. I realized while driving 6 hours alone that I am a good role model for my children when I value myself so much that I choose to take time for myself. It’s not selfish, as we sometimes trick ourselves into believing. It’s healthy. It shows our impressionable children that it’s good to make time to do the things we like, to enjoy life, and nurture the soul.
By constantly catering to our children, as we often times do as mothers, we teach them that we, as individuals, aren’t as important as they are. If we don’t take time to do things we like and need, then we model unhealthy habits that we would not want for them. I think I have spent more time on myself this past year than since before my children were born, so over 8 years. Fortunately, my children are at the age where they no longer require undivided supervision and care. It is wonderful!! (If you’re still crawling through the baby and toddler stage, hang in there; it’s hard!).
But, going to yoga, jogs, walks with friends, going to concerts, dinner and coffee with friends, reading books, taking hikes, and even going away has been and will continue to be great! It’s not selfish because it makes me happier and thus, a better mom. Absence makes the heart grow fonder! I miss my children when we are apart but it makes me so excited to see them again. Waiting another 2 years may not be necessary this next time around!