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Why I Needed a Mom Vacation

At the beginning of the month, I left D in the capable hands of my husband and traveled across the country to be with my family for four days. This trip was meant to off-set the fact that my husband would be going to Boston for four days in May, leaving me home with D. This was also meant as a break for me. Because as much as I love D, I needed a break.

Ever since we moved across the country, staying home with D has been harder and harder. This could be because my husband got a new job that meant he would be gone more than with his old job. It also could have been the fact that I didn’t really know anyone initially. As the months have past, we’ve adjusted to his job and I’ve made friends. But I was still struggling- more than I had ever before. The hour or so that D slept every day just wasn’t cutting it. I considered getting up early for some “me” time, but that meant going to bed earlier and missing out on time with my husband. So we decided that I should go on a “Momcation.” We knew that this wouldn’t necessarily fix the problems I was having, but it would at least give the me break I had been craving for so long.

And what a wonderful break it was! To be honest, I didn’t miss D too much because 1) I was busy reconnecting with friends and family, 2) I knew I would only be gone for a few days, and I would see him in person soon, and 3) I could FaceTime him whenever I wanted.

Almost everyone I saw while on vacation (or who knew ahead of time that I was going) assumed that I was bringing D with me. It was almost as if they assumed we were inseparable. The two different responses I got when I explained that I had left him behind were, “Why would you do that?” and “That must be nice!” I’m glad to say that most people belonged to the latter party, where they understood that I needed a break and that it was easier to go on a trip on my own rather than bring a toddler along.

I know in the past I had the same question when I heard that one of my friends was leaving her kids and husband behind to go on a trip. I think the underlying assumption is that somehow that mom doesn’t really love her kids, or at least that she doesn’t love being around them. I’m glad to say my feelings have since changed, and I realized how judgmental those thoughts were. Now I believe that a mom who takes care of herself – whether that’s daily “me” time or an occasional “momcation” or whatever else helps her recharge – ultimately is better able to care of her children.

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