Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Better Mother

I got to put into practice something I learned when Abigail was about six months old. Sometimes, in order to be a better, more refreshed version of Mommy, you must have time away from the roost. This time can come in three different forms, but I will only touch on two. Those forms are 1. Date night with hubby, 2. Alone Time, or 3. Girl Time.

When Abigail was around six months old, I had that first rush of alone time. I might have had some before then, but I don't really remember in the haze of nursing. We were on a pretty strict schedule to make sure that I aided in any way of making her thunder thighs the chunkiest in all the land. I had taken her to our college ministry house, where Paul and I spent most of our daytime hours. I asked him if I could leave her there with him and get away for just a bit. He agreed, and I was gone, baby, gone. My time out consisted of me getting an iced mocha from Coffee Junkiez in Muncie (lookout, Starbucks) and walking around WalMart. Now, usually my favorite alone time consists of walking around Hallmark reading the cards, but I don't want to blow all of your minds too quickly. I don't think I bought a thing at WalMart, which is a feat of unearthly proportions, because let's face it, a lot of people smarter than me make a lot of money to make sure I never leave WalMart empty-handed. When I returned to the BCM house, I felt so revived, so energized, after that little hour away.

I was able to cuddle her more and laugh at her more, and even make twinkly eyes toward my husband.

Since then, I try to have little "get-out-of-the-house" moments, even if it is eleven o'clock at night and I wander WalMart under the guise of "buying Pullups." I would gladly wander a Target instead, but there is not one within an hour and a half of me. That trip might be hard to justify.

Last weekend, I had TWO girl times. On Friday, I went to a mini-baby shower ("mini" because it is baby #3, but a boy after two girls). It was near Indianapolis. Abigail stays with Paul for all of these times (to ease your thoughts of Abigail sitting alone watching Caillou), and they usually have a little Date Night of their own. Once I got in the car, I was dancin'. I put my music on nice and loud and drive down the interstate looking like quite the fool, I'm sure. My time with the girls was so fun, and yes, refreshing. The next day, I had coffee with a friend and did just a touch of shopping. Just a very small touch (like gift card touch).

After having Abigail sick for one full week and not going ANYWHERE, and then last week having Paul gone at the March for Life in D.C. for three nights, I was going a little stir-crazy. I never want it to seem like I don't appreciate my family or love the chance to stay home with Abigail. I love it more than anything. But there are just those moments where you gotta get away. Yes, I could have a Calgon moment. But I much prefer a Get In the Car and Go Somewhere moment. Sometimes I don't realize how much I need it until I am away. Then, when I come home, I am full of hugs and lovin's and energy. If an occasional iced mocha makes me a better mother, well, that's just a price I am willing to pay.


Beth said...

Sigh...no girl time for me.

But I did go to Kohl's to use a gift card all by myself on Saturday. Yesssss!

nlamom said...

I completely relate! Every time Mitch goes on a trip, especially overseas, something goes wrong at our house. One time both kids were sick at the same time!!

Anonymous said...

I always went to Pool's to "browse" after being "in" all week....I think I knew every inch of that store and The Cricket Shop. Daddies can offer great relief time...we just hope they don't fall asleep or get too involved in the ball game to notice the little sweethearts are a bit TOO quiet!