I’m sitting here psyching myself up for a night out. I like to say that I could use a night out here and there, but saying and doing are two different things. The “pre-baby me” would think the “post-baby me” was a lunatic. But Monday through Friday, I only get two very precious hours a day with Baby H. And thinking about missing a minute of that time chokes me up.
More and more lately I’ve been a happy homebody. In the back of my mind I think “Oooh, a night out would be so nice.” But when push comes to shove, I have a hard time actually planning a night out. And when I have plans, I generally end up cancelling to stay home unless it’s a work commitment I can’t get out of.
I think it’s so very, very important to have some time out – spending it with friends, your spouse, or just by yourself. I know that I need that time. I just don’t know how to allow myself to have it.
During the week, I get Baby H up at 7am. We spend a frantic hour together where I try to cram in nursing, getting her dressed, and interacting with her in some meaningful way (I hope). By 8am I’m out the door. I get home at 6pm. We spend the next hour playing, feeding her dinner, and then getting ready for bed. By 7pm I’ve put a very sleepy baby into her crib. Some nights it’s sooner if she didn’t take a good afternoon nap. Taking advantage of this time with her means you will very rarely find me away from home on a weeknight, unless I go out after she’s in bed (and if I do, it’s to the gym to workout).
Since weekdays are tough, the weekends are my time with Baby H. We have two full days together and I try and take advantage of all of that time with her! Which means, of course, I don’t really make plans on the weekends (unless it’s something that includes Baby H). And, since Mr. H works a lot of weekends, it’s often not possible for me to make weekend plans anyway.
So, here I am tonight. I joined a book club because I knew it would force me to spend some time out of the house and make some new friends. I’m always excited about the idea of the book club, but the day of I really struggle. As each minute ticks by I keep on thinking about how I’m not going to see Baby H tonight, and I can’t get over how sad it makes me. But I know that this is the time that I said I wanted, and in all truth it’s probably the time that I truly need. I just have to swallow my feelings of mommy guilt…because as I’m slowly learning on this motherhood journey, there aren’t enough hours in the day, so sometimes you’re forced to choose. Tonight, for a few hours, I have to choose me.
And I know that Baby H is having a fabulous time with her daddy, and she will be smiling her big smile when she sees me bright and early tomorrow morning.
How do you make time for yourself?