Last year, at this time, we lived in Calgary which for us was a 2-day drive from where we live today. We did not have any family nearby and we were raising 3 kids without any guilt-free rest from parenting. We could pay for sitters but since we live on a budget the cost/benefit never seemed to make sense. Friends offered but they lived busy lives and have kids of their own so we rarely accepted these offers. I fully accept that it was our fault that we rarely had time to ourselves. We have now moved closer to our parents, who are all retired, and they will gladly take the kids for an evening, a day, or even a couple days like we are taking advantage of right now.
This is our second day by ourselves while the kids spend time with their grandparents. This is really the first time since our move that we have taken advantage of this and I do not know why we waited so long. We want to be at our best while raising our children and it is clear that these breaks provide a necessary infusion of variety to allow us to be in tip-top parenting shape. We love spending time with our kids and when we look at this period of our lives we will probably not even remember these days alone as all the prime memories will all be with the kids. Time spent as a family is better than time we can spend away from them, but we will lose the appreciation of time with the kids if we do not have a little time away.
This sounds like we are making apologies as to why we are ignoring our kids for a couple of days and maybe it is that we are not used to not feeling guilty for going on our own. We wanted to have kids and have this wonderful family so it is our responsibility to look after them. Maybe it isn’t guilt that we feel when we are out on our own having fun. Maybe we are missing the kids a little bit. Either way we are enjoying a few days to ourselves and when the kids come home with us we may even be better parents, definitely rejuvenated a little. Being able to have a few days on our own was definitely a benefit worth moving for.