“It’s one thing to know to take time off.
It’s another thing to actually do it.”
Pictured above: Members of the Mothers’ Center of Fort Collins (Colorado) during a group camping trip
this past summer in an effort to incorporate family time and parent time into their busy schedules.
Playdates at the park, volunteering at your child’s school, reading books together before bedtime – parenthood can be all these happy things…
Until the days when it’s not.
Do you know what I mean?
Those days when you feel stretched thinner than an overblown balloon?
- Days where you’re juggling work with errands, toddler music classes and doctor appointments.
- Days where your email inbox is binging, phones are ringing, and doorbells seem to be constantly dinging.
- Days where hours race by like minutes yet the morning feels like it happened forever ago.
Sometimes (on days like these) trying to keep everything together in your family’s busy schedule feels nearly impossible. And that’s the direction today was going for me until…
I remembered to take a break.
When the Stars Align…
Here’s what happened: I had just finished attending a parent organization meeting at my children’s elementary school. I could have easily gone home after the meeting. However technically my babysitter (a.k.a. my own Mom and Dad) could have stayed until 1. And technically I needed to eat lunch anyway. And of course the clincher: My friend who was also at the meeting, she technically needed to eat lunch too!
You see? Things fell right into place.
The gift of time for a spontaneous luncheon with a friend had been handed to me packaged perfectly with little room left to say “No!” (Not to mention, I had just gotten through a couple of crazy busy days and desperately needed just an hour to reboot myself to attack the next couple of just-as-crazy-busy days.)
Truth be told, when given extra time in my day, statistically speaking – 9 out of 10 times I end up spending that valuable time on:
Helping with homework
Maybe doing an extra load of laundry
Working in my home office
(During the busy month of December) wrapping holiday gifts.
However today the stars had aligned and by some miracle I remembered to give myself a break.
I make them, you make them, we all make them… In fact, there is always an excuse or a reason why we can’t take a break.
- You don’t have a babysitter.
- You need to finish something very important.
- There’s always tomorrow… You’ll have waaay more time tomorrow.
Do these excuses sound familiar? The thing is… something always comes up tomorrow and these same justifications often are repeated day after day.
Personally, when I do manage to finally take a break, it is usually because the break was either:
a.) Planned a month in advanced (when I didn’t realize how busy my day would be) OR
b.) Spontaneous – leaving me no time to think of reason’s I can’t or shouldn’t take a break.
The truth is, what I really need most of the time more than anything else during these busy, busy days is just an hour or two for myself to reboot, rest,
vent talk with a friend, read, exercise – to just BE without being busy.
However sometimes… making the choice to help myself, doesn’t always make the cut.
Yet today I (me, myself and I)
Made. The cut.
Today I remembered to give myself a break.
Leave a Comment: How often do you make taking a break for yourself important? What helps remind you to occasionally pause from the busy life of parenting to just “BE?”
Mothers’ Centers across the nation help remind parents that they do deserve a break by arranging for parent interaction at social outings, offering childcare during meetings, or maybe incorporating Babysitting Co-ops into their programming.
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Mothers’ Center offers but don’t have a Mothers’ Center nearby?
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