Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Do You Miss Your Kids?

While I was in Atlanta, my kids stayed home with a close family friend whom we all love dearly.  There has never been a questions of trust and, quite frankly, they usually tell me to go 'bye-bye' when she comes over.

I was a little surprised, though.  In most of my conversations, people kept asking me, "Do you miss your kids?"  to which I would respond, "No, they are in good hands.  We all needed this break."  80% of the time, they would look at me like I was crazy. 

On Saturday night, I was telling my dad that I felt kind of guilty that I wasn't pining for my kids.  Obviously, I thought about them and was hoping that they were having fun, but I wasn't dying to get home to be with them. 

He had a great response.  He said,
"That's really an unfair question.  You took this weekend because you needed a break from the day-to-day.  Being a mom IS your job.  As much as you love your kids, there is a lot of work involved in your day.  Of course you don't miss that."

In talking with my dad, it gave me great peace and frustration all at the same time.  It gave me peace in that I wasn't a bad mom for not missing them, but it also made me frustrated because, somehow, missing them has become equated to loving them.

When I told people that I wasn't missing them, they looked at me like I was crazy.  It was as if they thought I didn't love my kids and enjoy being a mom...and that's not true.  I love my kids dearly and I do enjoy my job (although very challenging, frustrating, and exhausting) but quite frankly, sometimes we all need a break.  I don't want my kids to be incapable of operating without me.  Although age appropriate, I want their security to be within themselves, not in me. 

I want other mom's to know this same thing.  Admitting that you need a break from the day-to-day grind does NOT mean that you don't love your kids or your job.  It means that you all have personalities and sometimes they clash.  It means that, oh my gosh, you get tired and it would best for everyone for you to step back, take care of yourself, and then go back into the game with a full battery. 

I encourage you to recognize your limits.  Be confident in your mothering and your love of your children, but know that if you are worn down, you won't be a good mom.  You will have nothing left to give besides your day to day chores.  And guess what!?!  When you take your break, ENJOY IT!  Don't spend your time worried about home.  Life does, in fact, go on without us!

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