We got a surprise this week. My mom came to watch the kids on Tuesday when the Dancing Queen couldn't go to school because of her fever the night before and at the end of the night, she took the kids home for the week. (Their cousins are in town from out of state and she wanted them all to spend time together. And she always dreamed of being a full time baby sitter for her grandkids, just as my paternal grandma did for us.)
Anyway, I found myself sans kids for several days. The Mad Scientist and I think it is probably the longest we have ever been away from the Dancing Queen. (She has been knocked unconscious for much longer periods of time, but we were still by her side.)
It was nice. I was able to sleep in later in the morning and get to work earlier. And the only thing keeping me awake at night was myself. There was no crying, no nightmares, no worrying that the kids are too cold and wondering if I should check on them. It was very freeing.
The best part of it all was getting up in the morning and having the house all to myself. I made coffee and sat at my computer, reading what I wanted without interruption. It was so very wonderful.
Of course, I have been going through kid withdrawl and I am beyond excited that my kids will be home tomorrow evening. I miss them so much, especially when so many heart kids are going through very rough times. I just want to go to their room right now and hug them like I do every night, but they are not there.
Still, this time away from my sweet babies made me realize that while I have been very good about getting myself out of the funk I was in earlier this year, I still have a long way to go in making time for just me. I've been better. This blog is good for that. I take time to write posts when I need to get my thoughts out there. But, I still don't have enough time set aside for me to be me. I don't normally have time to sit back and enjoy my coffee. I'm either guzzling it on the way out the door, leaving it untouched on the counter, or drinking at my desk at work.
The biggest difference that I noticed with the kids gone is that I feel less guilt. If I take the time to check my email or read the news in the mornings, I usually feel guilty because I should be spending that time with the kids or I should be making their breakfast so we get out the door quicker, so I get to work quicker, so I get home quicker and actually manage to see the kids before they go to bed. But this week, I didn't feel guilty because the only thing I had to do was get myself to work and back. I still saw the Mad Scientist. We had some nice dinners together.
The moral of the story is that that I am tired of the guilt. And tired of no me time.
So, when the kids come back, I intend to change my attitude about myself. I am worth more. And being a working mom doesn't mean that I have to put myself last on the priority list. If I prioritize myself and know I have time set aside for just me, then I think the rest will fall into place.
If I schedule "me time", just like I schedule everything else, I should be able to make it happen. If I know there will be me time, I won't try to continuously sneak in a minute here or there to be me. I can enjoy my time with my kids because that is kid time. I can work when at work because it is work time. I can fully be with my husband when I'm with my husband because it his time. And when it is my time with just me, everyone else can fend for themselves. I think that sounds fair. I am worth it!
What do you do to not lose yourself as a mom?