My husband spent part of the weekend in Temecula with some of his coworkers to compete in one of those Spartan Races. You know, those obstacle, mud runs where you have to pass through freezing cold water, commando crawl under barbed wire, swing over mud pits and fling yourself up and over climbing walls all in the name of fun. It was his first time doing something like this and it was fun indeed. Challenging, grueling and fun. The whole group successfully completed the race, all without injury, and all leaving with a desire to do it again. But better.

I feel proud of him for finding a fun challenge that excited him and going after it. I also felt a little envious because I don’t often pursue the little things I might like to do for myself, or with friends. The Spartan Race is not my cup of tea, but there are lots of things that I’m keen to try or feel would be a fun activity. Childless activities. Yet, I don’t often allow myself the freedom to do so. My husband supports the idea of me taking a little “me” time, just as I encourage him to do the same. He’s just better at it than I am. I’m not sure why.

I had a brief conversation with a friend about this. She’s in a similar mindset. She’s happy to encourage her husband to enjoy a day of golf or whatever the pursuit may be, but is less apt to do the same. Both of our husbands travel so we each end up managing the family on our own at times. It would make sense to take a little time to ourselves to take in a movie, go for a hike, get a massage, or something random like a detox sweat (something I’m curious about) or shooting baskets at the park. Yet we rarely do.

For me, I feel a bit guilty about taking time away from Cole, even though he’s now at an age where he’s needing to take a bit of time away from me (from us) and is enjoying his own version of “me” time. He has so little time with me during the week due to my work schedule, so I feel like weekends are for him. The mom guilt tugs and pulls at me, and sometimes, he does too. I do know that he’s fine without me for a few hours, and that in the scope of a week, a month, a year, a life, a few hours to myself here and there are not going to have any kind of negative effect. More likely, those hours could have a positive impact.

This is something I need to improve upon. I am fine to make weeknight evening plans, like regular Mom’s Night Out dinners with my tribe, and board meetings for a non-profit I serve. Weeknight evenings are easier because if I go somewhere from work, I don’t have the influence of my son imploring me to stay home with him, and he doesn’t miss me much since he has his dad and weeknight routine. It’s the weekends, when a few lost hours would be most rejuvenating that I can’t seem to allow myself to stray.

I recognize the value of taking time to myself, both in terms of my sanity and my stress relief. I know it’s important to value yourself and to “put yourself on the list” as I often read. I know when I do make time for myself or follow through with things like taking better care of myself, I am happier, healthier and in many ways better equipped to share myself, my time, and my care with my son and my husband. I know all of this to be true, yet…

One Response

  1. I think most mums suffer from the same guilt complex of taking a me time or time out from family life no matter the abilities of your children. I hope you do take a little time for yourself as a rejuvenated you will be of more benefit to everyone in the family as I have discovered.

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