Recharging the Energizer Mummy
I don’t know about you, and while I wouldn’t have had it any other way, I feel like my life post birth has changed much more radically than my husband’s has. And I’m not sure whether that’s because I carried my son in my body for nine-and-a-bit months, or because I never returned to the office after my maternity leave expired… Whatever the reason, there comes a time when the balance needs to be redressed.
Any time a child’s been under the weather, you can bet his mom is, too. After nurturing my son through fevers and coughs and snotty noses while my husband was away on business for a week, I was burnt to a crisp. A blackened fuse. A charred mess. Of course this got me dreaming… About time to myself. And not just an hour spent sipping a latte a block away, either, but real time. An entire day of flying solo or maybe, if I was feeling really reckless, an entire weekend. The fantasy alone was enough to make me quiver, then, in the same breath, grit my teeth. Talk about guilt! Talk about Catch-22! We need time away in order to be better mothers to our children, and better wives to our husbands. Recharge the batteries and all that. Problem is: we seldom actually take that time, and as a result end up slow-roasting until we are literally spitting fire over spilled milk and yet another left-up toilet seat.
Men show no such hesitation when it comes to their time off. Why is that? They watch sports. They play sports. They drink as sport. They work hard, yes. But then, so do we. Yet we have real trouble giving ourselves permission to play. Why can’t we get as good as we give? Because we do: we give and give and give. And despite what our foremothers taught us, it’s not healthy or right to give until your well runs as dry as the Namib Desert.
And so, in the spirit of all that is right and healthy (and before I could change my mind), I booked a spa day. Now that whole day spent in my bathrobe, reading a dusty hardcover, pedicuring, snoozing, and Jacuzzying by myself isn’t just a pipe dream or distant fantasy. Who knows, it might even become an annual tradition. Extravagant? You bet. But you know what? I’m worth it. And so are you.
Julie M Green (aka Little Green Mom) is a novelist and freelance writer who rants and raves about all things mommy at www.littlegreen1.com. She lives in Toronto with her husband and two-year-old son, Jackson. Follow her on Twitter @juliemgreen or on Facebook at Little Green One.