A picture of a small photo album that is covered with fabric that looks like a map of the world. I'm trying to make small changes.

Is It Time for a Mom-caytion?

It recently dawned on me that maybe moms should  travel on their own sometimes. Take a small break from parenting duties, a mom-caytion. For me, it would actually be very difficult to leave my children for long periods of time (remember the trouble I had spending only one night away?), yet I can see the benefits!

Relationships can be difficult, even when the love between spouses runs deep. Relationships can be further strained when kids come along. Both parties can rightfully feel unappreciated.

thankful and blah blah blah

There are times that I’m thankful I’m not traveling, because things feel so difficult.  Those days definitely happen in clusters. Sometimes, the cause is known (for example, upcoming, exciting holidays). Others, there isn’t anything special that I can discern. It’s a growing pain, if you will. Those tough days are usually spent doing “damage control.” That means going around and cleaning up the new messes and only getting the bare minimum of regular chores done.

With two young kids, damage control is sometimes all I can muster.  It also ends up looking like I did nothing but sit on my butt all day, when the opposite is true.

What does cleaning up after children have to do with a Mom-caytion?

I’ve experienced working full time (without having kids) and being the sole breadwinner for my single self. However, my husband hasn’t experienced multiple days and moods of “solo” parenting (and single parents, you are amazing. I’m throwing that out there simply because it’s true and needs to be acknowledged).  I’m not sure if he can imagine my life.

I chose the full time mom life and I love it. I even love the hard parts, sort of, because of the freedom I’m provided in return. And now that my kids aren’t babies anymore, I have the opportunity to pursue interests like this blog, as well as other work at home ventures. These are often more time draining than producing a large income, but they are important to me.  I’ve always thought that you have to pay your dues and start on or near the bottom, in order to learn the ropes.  My previous occupation didn’t allow for a part time work life and it certainly wasn’t my passion, so I’m not currently pursuing that. I’m starting over.

A picture of Natalie with mascara on her nose. Time for a mom-caytion?

Mom life: trying to put on make up and somehow managing to get mascara on my nose. It didn’t happen because I’m a mom. It happened because I’m me. The selfie is solely due to being a mom: I think it’s funny now, not a catastrophe!

Good enough is the new perfect

I’m not the only mom I know who is raising kids as the main caregiver, while also trying to work part time at home without other childcare options. Some have additional jobs/careers outside the home.  I write during nap time. I write during quiet playtime.  Sometimes, I’ll write after they are asleep. My kids are involved with making videos, too. I’ll edit video on my phone between the kids needing me or needing food. Good enough is the new perfect.

Going to work all day is hard and can be quite stressful. And then coming home to chaos and a messy house doesn’t help. I know this. I think it is a common complaint between spouses where one is home all day and the other works outside the house.

Raise a glass to the traveling mom

I just wonder what it would be like if my spouse had to stay home for a few days with the kids. He’d have to figure out how to keep them on schedule (naps, meals, etc). He’d have to figure out when to shower (so as not to get out of the shower and find a huge mess in the kitchen or throughout the house).  And the squabbles! He’d have to deal with those, too. Food. Toys everywhere. The furniture getting moved around. What about one wanting to outside and the other doesn’t? Dealing with crabby feelings. Playing. Doing dishes. Cleaning up messes. And more messes.

Some days are an absolute dream. And I know full well, he’d get the dreamy days. And that’s okay. I have to be candid: I wish he could experience the hard days solo, once or twice. On the flip side, I do want him to experience the amazing and joyful days, too. It’s all part of the stay-at-home life. I guess I don’t take a mom-caytion because I really don’t want to give up more than an hour or two at a time with my kids.

Because I’m happy. Even on the hard days.

Have you taken a trip without your kids? Or a solo mom-caytion? Do you travel for work regularly? Love it or hate it?

4 thoughts on “Is It Time for a Mom-caytion?

  1. Amy-Anne Williams says:

    Yes to travelling moms! I have no children of my own and don’t plan on having some any time soon, but I imagine that if I did I’d take plenty of mom-caytions, a chance to recoup and get myself back together after all the hard work.

    Little Moon Elephant

  2. Julie says:

    I’ve never taken a trip alone. I’m not very good at leaving my kids at all, actually. But I definitely understand wanting my husband to experience what it’s like to be the primary parent. Maybe someday. For this year, I’m just hoping to travel somewhere with the kids, which we haven’t done yet, either!

    • Natalie says:

      Traveling with my kids is also the most important thing for me right now. I was realizing that I feel that I can be my truest self with them, even between all the squabbles and hard stuff.

      I certainly loved my alone time before I was married and miss it sometimes, but I guess I get enough peace now to realize this won’t be my life forever. Occasionally, we will have a rough phase and that can last awhile. That affects all the chores and even though I haven’t been, it looks like I was lazy. So, that contributes negatively to my relationship. It’s frustrating for both of us!

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