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Make Time for Personal Growth

Mommy blogger Janice Croze hands out a very useful piece of advice for parents: give yourself a little “me” time.

Personal growth is vital to success as a parent.

I can hear myself think and all I can think of is that I miss the noise.

As a work-at-home mom with two young children and a husband, I don’t often eat a meal alone in a restaurant. But tonight my family is on the other side of the continent and I’m on a business trip in Disney World, alone. I don’t think there is a place on the planet where parental solitude is more punctuated than Disney World.

As I watch a little girl my daughter’s age try to manipulate her fork and force a piece of dessert into her mouth, my caramel mousse loses its sweetness.

I reprimand myself, Janice, all too soon you will be back to real life, wrestling Olivia into her high chair or warning Jackson that if he doesn’t settle down he will be eating dinner in his room.

It doesn’t really work. I still feel lonely. I wonder what my kids are doing and I imagine their sweet faces lighting up when I open the front door.

But, as an over-stretched, over-stressed, over-worked mom, I think these opportunities to miss my kids are priceless. Yes, it hurts. And if I had my choice, my two little monkeys would be sitting next to me enjoying dinner in Disney World.

But it does give me a much-needed break. It makes me appreciate the time I do have with them. And I hope it makes them appreciate their time with me a bit more too!

I am a huge slave to mommy guilt. If I am not doing something that directly involves looking after my kids, I beat myself up. I live and breathe for my children.

I know that is not healthy. So, as much as I may resist it, I try to force myself to look after the me in mommy. I know the healthier and more satisfied I am, the better mother I am for my children.

Yes, most of my pastimes still contribute to my role as mommy, but there are plenty of me moments in there too. And so when I do come home, and grab hold of my kids and hug them until we all fall in to a pile of laughter, it is all the sweeter.

Sometimes, we moms need a bit of absence to make our hearts grow even fonder.

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