When Do We Get a Break

My daughters mean the world to me.  I love them with every ounce of my being.  Sometimes I wonder if I love them too much, if I will stifle them with my love, if I am putting them before God in my life, putting them before my husband.

I wonder these things.  I think most mothers do.

I also wonder, when do I get a break?  When do I get down time?  My girls are young, 2 1/2, 5 and 6 1/2.  Those ages are demanding.  They are needy. I could be on and at their disposal 24/7.

But sometimes, I need a minute.  Not to be away from them, just a minute.  Maybe to check twitter or facebook or play a quick word game.

Their demands don’t go away.  Their demands aren’t any less important than they were a minute ago.  But sometimes, mama and daddy need a minute.

Am I aware that some day they will be older?  Yes.  Am I aware some day they won’t call for me every minute?  Yes.  Am I aware that some day I am going to miss these ages?  Yes, painfully so.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t need this minute.  Denying myself this moment won’t make their childhood perfect.  It won’t make me the perfect mother to do my children’s every bidding.  It won’t make me miss them less when they grow up and leave the house.

Your cute little story on facebook about how my children want me now and I should savor this now, before it is gone, doesn’t make anything better.  It makes it worse.  It makes me feel guilty for needing a minute.  It makes me feel judged for taking that minute.  It makes me feel like a failure.

And that,  my friend, my children don’t need.  They don’t need a mother who feels judged.  They don’t need a mother who feels looked down upon.  They don’t need a mother who made herself a doormat and a non-person in order to not miss a single moment of her children’s lives.

Parenthood, at any age, isn’t exactly easy.  It is a full-time job.  It gives no holidays and no sick days.  The best we can get is moments.  Stolen moments, needed moments.

Survive til you Thrive!

4 Responses to When Do We Get a Break

  1. Of COURSE you need a minute sometimes. You can’t wait until they’re bigger to take a break. That’s not good for you, and not good for you is not good for them.

    • I got a little hot under the collar yesterday about one of those cute stories about how moms should be paying attention cuz their kids want and need them now and won’t always 🙂

      • Pfffft. It’s all about balance. I think posts like that mean well, but the judginess is counterproductive. The truth is the breaks are what allow us to sink deeper into the moments of joy. What I am realizing I need to work on is being DELIBERATE about my breaks and making sure they really recharge me so that when I dive back in I can be deliberate about that too.

  2. Those mommy moments or mommy timeouts are crucial for recharging our batteries. You need a moment. When you take time for yourself, your girls learn patience. They also learn that mamas need down time too just like kids. Hugs.

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