Yes, we all have said as parents at one time or another that we would LOVE a day or night away from our kids, either alone, with our partners or with our friends. Sometimes we want to experience all three of things types of events, yet if we are not careful there is something there in the corner. I will be brave enough to say it. Mommy worry. There. I said it. Even when we know our child is in good hands, we worry and it’s like they have taken a piece of us with them where they have gone. Of course when they are small and need us much more, it is normal that we have this parental anxiety. However, as they get older, it is important that though we miss our kids, we do not feel guilty to be away from them or to be taking a break away from them. Sometimes, they’ll even tell us. Mom, Dad, I won’t miss you. I’ll be with my friends, as Michael charmingly told me the other day as he spoke of his excitement about school overnight camp. I laughed to myself. I know he’ll miss us, though this is the tween attitude and perfectly normal. Friends are at the top of the totem pole.
Still, this post today is about parents, particularly Moms, giving themselves permission to do the things that they enjoy but may be hard to do on those rare opportunities they get away from mom responsibilities. So, what are some tips to remember that can help you enjoy your child-free hours away? Here they are, in no particular order:
- Make extra time in the am and pm for you to just be: This could be extra time with breakfast, meditating, exercising or just enjoying sitting in a favorite chair or drinking coffee not waiting for a little voice or voices to cry out, “Mom, I need this.”
- Plan ahead for activities that are hard to do when children are around: A great thing to plan is dinner out with a partner or friend, a massage, a shopping spree after work, something you would not normally do as you would be getting dinner going or supervising homework etc.
- Remind yourself that a mutual break for you both is good: Sometimes we feel bad if our child cries when we leave or they leave. Sometimes we worry if they look too happy. The thing is, a little parent/child break on a regular basis is healthy for the whole family. You’ll have new experiences with other people to talk about and have lots to talk about when you reconnect.
- Enjoy the silence that is in your home as sacred time for you: Ok, for parents that have more than one child you will not get total silence, but still you will have more quieter moments to ponder things and enjoy your own thoughts. For most Moms, this is a luxury few of us have had since the day our kids were born.
- Talk to other Moms who will remind you to enjoy yourself: If you are experiencing any guilt at all and missing your child, talk to Mom friends who will remind you that you deserve some you and adult time to recharge your parenting and woman batteries. They will most likely share a positive story or two with you also so you do not feel alone.
Exceptional Parents, do you feel guilty that you can’t enjoy time away from your Exceptional Child or sick with worry how they are doing? It is normal to worry, as your children are your responsibility and you want them to thrive. But remember, as long as you have made safe childcare arrangements, and you have a way of being reached should an emergency arise, you deserve to enjoy your solo time as you wish. You give so much as a parent that it’s important to give back to yourself too. Your child also needs to be with other people, so that they can keep sharing their amazing spirit with you and helping you to grow into the person you were meant to be. Until next time.
Are you the parent of an Exceptional Child struggling with how best to handle challenging behavior? Are you worried about development, anxiety, or doubting your abilities to help your child become the best they can be? I can help you find your confidence as a parent again. For more information about my journey and coaching programs, check out my website: http://www.creatingexceptionalparenting.com. Let me help personalize tools that will help your Exceptional family thrive!