Here's why I don't feel guilty of taking a break from mommyhood
Here's what happened when I first wanted to take a small break and head out somewhere alone, without my kids.
Ever since I remember, I have loved traveling and taking off on my own. I love heading out, with a few books and some good music for company, or sometimes with a few close friends, away from the regular routine of everyday life. I never gave it much thought, till I had my first baby.
Once I became a mother, for the first few months and years my priorities took a complete change, and taking a break was never on my mind. But yes, once my baby was a little older and a little less dependent on me, I thought it was a good time to take a break. However, I soon came to realize that not everyone thought the way I did.
For starters, even as I was talking to my partner on how I needed a small break to recharge my batteries and make some sense of my life as an individual, I could see the look of disbelief on his face.
“What? You want to go alone? Without the baby? Without us? Who will look after the baby then? Won’t you miss the baby? Will you really be able to enjoy?”
I spend each hour of each day of each week of each month being a mom. So it was not really that big a guilt trip for me when I first wanted to take a small break and head out somewhere alone, without me playing mommy.
Of course, I had assumed that the other parent would take over and my baby would be well loved and cared for, and it would be alright for me to go. Our society, however, doesn’t yet think that way.
After talking about this over and over with my partner, he finally realized that I really meant what I said, that I desperately needed a break. So it was with a lot of uncertainty that he agreed to play the main parent for those few days I wasn’t around.
Continue reading on the next page to know why I still believed taking a break on my own would actually help my babies
I left feeling happy, and no, I wasn’t feeling guilty at all. It would be wrong to say that I did not miss my baby at all. I did. But not so much as to make me feel homesick and go back home in the middle of the trip.
After I had my second baby, I was back to taking my breaks earlier, as the younger one already had some great company in the form of my elder child, and both were quite compatible together. But this time round, even though I thought it would be easier for people to understand that I did need a break and that it was quite natural, I was subjected to a volley of questions and stares.
From my partner to his parents to my parents, family, friends and neighbours, the moment anyone realized that a mommy was planning to take a trip herself, without the kids, the eyebrows would shoot up, the questions would start and everyone would try their best to make me feel the worst mom in the world.
But no, I am not.
And do you know why heading out on these trips alone does not make me a bad mom? Because it helps me recharge my batteries, helps reduce stress and irritability, reconnect with peace and find my happiness once again. And do you know how that helps my kids? Because by the end of the trip, it helps me be a happier and more tolerant mommy :)
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