There are days when I look at my “single” friends (those without kids) and envy the time they have to run errands, go out to a nice dinner with adult conversation, go to a movie, and then relax in a nice bath in the evening. I would love more Me Time considering I work a full time job, I own a wedding planning business, I’ve started another tiny business with a friend, I’m considering another business, I have two kids (and one on the way – YAY!), two dogs, and a husband. Me Time is rare. I don’t complain about it nor do I have an urgent need for it but it would be nice every once in a while (like maybe once a month or couple of months).
Anyway, each week I receive the Attachment Parenting newsletter and this week’s topic was Mommy Me Time. The newsletter stated that modern parenting states that “we are told [mommy me time] is vital for us (it helps us to recharge and have interests outside of motherhood) and important for our babies and young children (they learn to be independent from us).” Does Attachment Parenting agree? I was surprised to learn that the author of this article did not believe that it would be beneficial! She argued that by wanting “time apart from our kids often leads to more frustration and upset all around. It rarely recharges us enough, as promised, to feel better when we come back, and we are stuck in a vicious circle of craving more and more (and feeling frustrated when we can’t get it).”
So how do you recharge those batteries? How do you maintain calm and not go insane? The author suggests “Switching gears, from needing a ‘Mommy Time-Out’ to refuel to being able to refuel by being even more present with our kids, is a much more practical solution.” She continues to explain “what really does help is to do the exact opposite of what we feel we need in the moment. Rather than run for the hills, actually get down to their level and really be with them. Bring them food, play a game, sing, chat, dance, read, tickle, run around outside—whatever helps you to reconnect.”
My experience? Going to a movie or out to a nice lunch with friends is great while I’m IN THE MOMENT but when I get home and I need to IMMEDIATELY jump into mommy mode, it sort of ruins things for me. I do, however, feel a bit more patient with the kids when they’re crying and whining but the couple of hours I spent out, quickly disappear into a distant memory. So I’m not really sure how much I was recharged.
What are your thoughts? Do you recharge after having spent time out with your partner or friends?