You know the saying “absence makes the heart grow fonder?” In today’s class we’ll be discussing how those simple words apply to parenting.
I don’t think we left my son overnight until he was 15 months or so. I was nursing so that made it hard in itself (neither of my kids took bottles… the struggle was real). I just never knew how he would do without me and I just really wasn’t ready to leave him. He was my first baby!
My second child even came with me to Chicago for work training when she was 4 months old because she wouldn’t take a bottle.
We’ve only been apart from them a handful of times but now that they’re older, it’s much easier to take trips or vacations by ourselves. And of course we miss the kids but you know, that time apart is sometimes necessary. Scratch that, it’s vital.
But if we’re being honest, being apart from your kids is good for everyone.
This sounds mean but I promise it’s not. It’s actually the opposite.
I’m not saying leave your kids every weekend or for months at a time or anything like that. But once in awhile, it’s refreshing for everyone to take a step back and recharge.
Why is it good for your kids?
It teaches them to listen to other adults other than you and your spouse.
It teaches them independence and the importance of adapting.
It makes them excited to see you when you come home.
It helps them self-soothe (mine were never good self-soothers so this was huge for us)
Why is it good for you?
It gives you a break. Emotionally and mentally.
It gives you a chance to reevaluate your parenting techniques.
It makes you realize how much you love them and miss them.
We’re so easily overwhelmed with the day-to-day defiance, lack of listening, and constant fighting. By taking a step back for a few days or even one night, we’re able to realize how much we really love and appreciate all of the small joys that come with being a parent.
Taking the time out of your day to play with them.
Really sitting down and listening to them.
Being there for them when they need a boo-boo kissed or have a bad day at school.
I’m in the middle of reading a parenting book (more on that coming soon) and I started to feel guilty with some of the behaviors I have been exhibiting. It’s so hard to keep my composure when my patience has run thin but the mom guilt is real when I look back and my actions. And when I went away a few weeks ago, it made me realize I need to approach things differently.
It’s so easy to forget that they’re just kids. And that’s not an excuse. They’re learning and growing and we have to be in the best mental state possible to assist them in doing so. And sometimes it’s okay to take a weekend away to clear your mind and hit the “restart” button.
We’re all human and none of us are perfect. And yes, we all love our kids and want to spend all the time with them that we can. But having a few days or nights away from them might actually help your relationship grow and bond you on a deeper level.
Give it a try and let me know what you think. And if you have any experience with your time apart from your kids, please share below! xo