Nov 10, 2010

What a Difference a Break Makes

It's amazing what a day away from your kid will do. I don't know if K just woke up in a better mood today or that I got my babysitter to watch him while I went into the city for a lunch date with hubby, but I have to say, I feel like a whole new mommy.

Up until recently, I never understood why SAHMs ever needed a day time babysitter. Perhaps it was because of the infertility struggles or my naivete about motherhood, but I imagined that once I became a mom, I'd want to spend 24/7 with my kid. Why wouldn't I, right? I mean, they're so cute and after all, if you've decided to no longer work full-time, then what else could you possibly be doing?

Well, that plan worked for the first year. Once K turned one, I realized that I was going to have my hands full and started looking for a part-time babysitter. Many months and crazy babysitters later, I finally found the angel that is Maria. My son loves her. And I love her because of it. But most importantly, I need her to help me be a better mother.

After yesterday's loss of temper, I knew I had to walk away from K for a day. A change of scenery. A lunch date with DH in a cool place downtown. Oh, and a little shopping to revive the me that's since been covered in spit up, snot and crayon marks. I miss that old me -- sometimes. Just getting dressed up to meet DH was better than a visit to the spa.

I need to feel like a woman. A woman who still takes care of herself. Who can intelligently converse about things other than which potty training methods work best or what to serve a toddler for lunch. The old me was interesting. Fashionable. And dare I say, desired.

For 4 hours, I felt good about myself again. I wasn't a mom. I was just a woman going about my day. And that break was enough to make me so excited to see my son. He too was so happy to see me. After Maria left, we played and "talked" as I prepared his dinner. He tried to test me, but the rejuvenated me handled things in stride.

As I write this, I'm back in my "mom" clothes, but I have my rock-chic (my look for today) self to thank for making me content to be called "Mama!" again.

Do you feel like a better mom when you take a break from full-time motherhood?


Carlita said...

I'm a new reader but your last two posts really resonate with me right now. Sometimes it is just too much and we really need support of all kinds - and breaks - and to remember that there is a real person behind the mom who needs to be cultivated a bit- oh yeah, and to get out of the mom clothes every once in a while. I'm so happy that you got away for a bit. I'm hoping to figure out a way to get one for myself soon.

Flucky Mom said...

Hi Calita, I'm glad the posts spoke to you. Hope you get a break soon too.

JJ said...

I totally love this post--cause I get it. I really do. I have felt guilty when I want to have Oman spend the weekend with my parents or in laws--but the break has always been good for everyone--and I am so excited to see him again. Also important to reconnect with my hubby!

Also, any tips on finding a babysitter? I have Oman in preschool--but havent had luck finding a babysitter--and do you mind talking price with me? You can email me if you have some time to chat about it--thanks! reprojeans at gmail dot com

Flucky Mom said...

JJ, you can look on I found 2 good sitters there. Eventually they wanted full-time work, but there's a pretty good selection. Lots of filtering options.

We found our sitter via another friend's nanny. So first, get the word out that you're looking. All the nannies/sitters know each other, so first hand recommendations is the way to go.

Hope you get a nice break soon!

Nico said...

I stayed at home with my boys for Timmy's first year. I found that I was getting way more frustrated with them than I wanted to, and didn't like the way I was acting around them. So I went back to work two days a week, and for the most part that's exactly the break I need. Except for this two stuff, I'd just like to fast forward about six months! (There are some super sweet moments too, but the crazies come out more often that I can deal with some days).

Lori Lavender Luz said...

I am SUCH a better mom when I get time to myself. Good for you for getting what you need to take care of yourself, too.

When mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy -- that's the motto around these parts.

The harder part for me it to forgive myself for not being perfect.

Go, your rock-chic self!

Anonymous said...

I'm here from ICLW :)

Love this post - a break definitely makes a positive difference around here, too. I find myself wanting to spend more time with my boys when I've had time to be "me" away from them.

There's always a balance to be found with caring for our kids and caring for ourselves. Sounds like you manage it well :)


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