Does anyone else think that birthdays are overrated?
I’ve been thinking, trying to remember at what point in my life birthdays changed from being one of the best days of the year to one of the worst.
Today, like any other birthday (at least for a while now) started abruptly and I knew within the first 10 minutes it was going to be like any other birthday. Woken before 7am with the demands of my 3 year old “where is this?”, “I can’t find that”, “I am hungry” , “mum, mum, mum…”
And so the dreaded day started. The morning continues with a whirlwind of noise and mess and by 9am I am sitting at the dining room table, looking around at a house that looks like a tornado has just whirled through it and I think to myself “I just cant do this…”
My husband decided my one day about me should be filled with what he thinks I need, brunch with him & my 3 year old followed by a massage. You may think that would be lovely but when you and your husband work from home and have spent literally every day together for the last 2 years, it’s not exciting. Nor is spending another day entertaining your 3 year old who has not been to preschool in over 2.5 weeks due to severe asthma. The type that keeps him up all night coughing to the point of vomiting. The type that causes wheezing, laboured breathing and can result in yet another hospital visit.
Today I sat there, exhausted, beyond sleep deprived and with a nose that wouldn’t stop running. I thought to myself, “I just can’t do this”.
I pulled out my laptop and before I knew it I was looking at hotels. The one thing I love doing out of everything is going to a hotel on my own or with hubby. Simply enjoying a long hot shower, ordering room service & watching the discovery channel. It’s better than any massage, facial, mani, pedi, or day spa. Just sitting in a white robe with a meal of your choice watching whatever you want uninterrupted…. that is what I call pure indulgence and absolute pure bliss.
The thing was, I just couldn’t get past the thought of my daughter. She had given me her hand made card before she left for school and being 6 years old understood the concept of birthdays. I knew she would not understand if she came home to find I had left for a night to just do my own thing instead of celebrating it with our little family.
I pondered staying put and sticking it out for her sake. But I had a dear friend, Mrs J’s, voice inside my head asking “What about you?” So often as mothers we put ourselves last and what I’ve been learning of late is that all that creates is an over worked, burnt out mamma that has nothing left to give. And so with that I started to look at the day objectively.
I have no village, no family or relatives to celebrate with or to ask for help from. My dear friends are all interstate. I was feeling alone, unwell and extremely sleep deprived after getting 4-5 hrs sleep a night for the last 2 weeks. The thought of staying in the house for one more second was just not going to work so I did what I do best. I threw caution into the wind and screamed “Carpe Diem” (not out loud, that’s not my style. But internally from the heart I screamed it)
I made a decision there and then that we as a family are going away for the weekend. A spontaneous last minute getaway. I went to my “one of these days we will go here” lists, called the hotel and asked if there are any rooms available. Then cross checked with a few websites to see if I can get any last minute discounts and by the time my husband arrives back with my son at 10:30am I inform him we were going away.
I started packing the kids stuff, my stuff, toiletries, a few toys, food/snacks, clean out the fridge, pop a load of washing on, and in between all that message my dear ‘mother’s helper’ who has been a life saver since my water skiing accident to ask if she could pop over do an hour or two’s help around the house. Thankfully she is local and within seconds said “yes”.
By 12 noon she had arrived and finished off the house whilst we piled into the car. We surprised our daughter with an early school pick up to head to our last minute getaway. So there we were, in the car on the way to one of the top ranked Family Friendly Resort in Australia. Filled with a water park, kids club, rock climbing, ice skating and play room, we were excited for the weekend ahead.
It might not be a 5 star hotel with room service & fluffy white robes but if the kids are happy and entertained all weekend and I don’t have to do any housework, that I think that is a pretty good trade off.