Wednesday, July 6, 2016
I took a wrong turn and I just kept going
No this blog is about something much less talked about - thinking of running away as an adult and more specifically as a Mom. As a kid I thought about running away - twice. My first attempt was done not out of angst or rebellion but because it looked kind of cool in some show I saw Now I do not camp or like to "rough" it and apparently this held true from when I was a kid. I packed a suitcase and was going to .. oh I don't know where I was going but it looked like an adventure. I was home and unpacked before my parents got home from work. My second attempt was a threat to which my mother rolled her eyes and told me to go for it because she recognized it for the teenage angst it was - I never left the house it was freakin' cold that night I remember and I do not like the cold. OK so this is obviously a failure for me or maybe I am more of the passive resistance mindset.
However, as an adult and especially as a mom the thought has crossed my mind a lot more than I ever counted on. I get the Bruce song more than ever. It is the dirty secret I have whispered to other moms and they whisper back that they know, they get it, they want to know if I could come by and get them as I do it.
It is overwhelming in so many ways to be a mom - there is the physical exhaustion (especially when they are little) and then there is the responsibility. Oh the responsibility they are just so needy, they want you to answer and deliver and know so much and there are times when frankly after a day of all day work and commuting I just want to walk in and have .... SILENCE. Just silence, no one coming at me to ask or share or need or be hungry. To sit as I did in my apartments and just do nothing but decompress for an hour or so.
It is also daunting that you have to give up so much of yourself for them - your activities, your plans, your time to blog or do whatever it is in the house that you wanted to do and goodbye spontaneity. It is the constant calls of "mom", "mommmm", "mommy"... constant.
I love my kids and being a mom but there are times when I miss my me time and this is not my secret apparently but that of almost every other mom I have shared it with. There are two approaches you could take to this - the one that I have found my friends and I have where you find a way to escape enough to recharge or the one that winds up Mommy Dearest style therapy blame the kid. They are not at fault so not something I would ever go to, nor did the friends I have spoken to on this subject but we all witnessed it as kids and it is seared in our brains as cautionary tales.
You need you time and teaching your kids that they are worthy of doing same for themselves by modeling this is actually a good mothering technique. I blog either in the morning when they are not up or frankly have learned to tell them that unless there is an emergency my allotted time to blog is mine not theirs to take away. As a woman raising boys I want them to see women as individuals who have needs and who are amazing mothers (plug for me) but also independent beings who need other things to keep growing. We live in a different time - a time when parenting is all engrossing and your time is spent with laser focus on kids' needs but that can be a bit dangerous too as we do not want them to think that this is the world - it is not, they may be awesome but they are part of a world not the entirety of it.
So go ahead - run away, to an activity where you do not do grocery or to do lists but immerse yourself in it, to a shopping trip of the kind you did pre-kids with leisurely strolls and not for anything you actually "need", to a movie, to dinner with friends or even to a mini break. It is ok to want to runaway because as a mom the place you most want to run back to is those same kids. After all the other side of this coin is less Thelma and Louis and more like Ferris Bueller's day off because we love our kids, we enjoy spending time with them and let's be frank we bask in the glow of being so needed.
In honor of the original Brexit and in the spirit of the 4th of July - I declare we are all entitled to the pursuit of our happiness.