Well after being together over eight years, married nearly seven; a serious vacation was past due for my husband and I. We were both cranky, tired, sick of working…and ready for a break from our kiddos that we adore so much.
As mother’s, we feel responsible to always be the ones that are there for our kids, our families. We feel guilty for taking any time, especially enough time, to ourselves. We struggle with the internal battle of control and missing them, and desperately needing time to ourselves.
Then, you throw a marriage into the mix. That marriage also needs to be nurtured and cared for. Okay, so where do I find all this time? I don’t. Thus, The Seven Year Itch Story, the Doing It All story, and many other articles I write based on my crazy life. We don’t have enough time, so at least one item or relationship in our lives is always lacking attention.
My mom agreed to watch our children while my husband and I went to Cozumel, Mexico for seven nights. Of course, the day she was to arrive Washington State got struck with a huge snow and ice storm, delaying her for nearly three days—and thus her not arriving until after I had already left for our trip. Thankfully a close friend agreed to keep both my kids, and while Clayton did get sick in between, everyone survived and my mom finally made it.
Enter paradise. This is literally where we stayed…a beautiful white sandy beach and crystal blue see-through waters. I spent lazy days reading books and magazines, laying either poolside or oceanside, whatever my little heart desired. When we got bored, we took long walks on the beach, collecting sea shells for our daughter and watching the waves crash in.
There were a few fun excursions including snorkeling and ziplining and rapelling (the last two are an entire article in itself) but the best moments were on the beach, relaxing and not having a care in the world. No wonder my life is so stressful! All I do is run and stretch myself thin 24/7. I realized that we all need a little R&R, no matter how short of a trip—we all need it. Our kids will survive.
Shannon and I had several deep talks…the kind you never have time for when you have little ones running around. We realized—we are indeed so different. And we have both compromised many things to be together; which that in itself is a miracle. However with all of our different views on life, certain aspects of religion, child-rearing, etc—we have so many views we see the same. And the end destination is the same. To be together, with a happy whole family. We realized we need this time apart once in awhile to get back to that. To find that inner peace we’ve been missing…the peace that we haven’t had in a long time.
So why wait so long? Mostly money. We either were having babies or were just starting our careers. Now, we are at a place financially we can go on trips a couple times a year. However, to be honest…we could have been going a long time ago. All I had to do was cut out a little Starbucks, save a few dollars by cutting back at the grocery store…start a trip fund. Even if it was for only a night or two…it’s well worth it.
I would definitely suggest longer than a few nights if you can, but if you can’t…you at least need a couple away. Don’t feel guilty…yes you’ll miss your kids but they will be fine. I found this peace after giving my mind a rest…a peace again I haven’t felt in years. I am calmer at work…I actually enjoyed a full day of fun with the kids after getting back with little fuss of the house, or cleaning…etc. While each family is different, I believe to sustain a happy relationship and self-sanity; we all need a little R&R.