I have a confession to make.
I took the day off work today and still took Olivia to daycare. (gasp)
As a mom who works outside the home, this is a big deal. I get so little time with my daughter that I want to spend every waking minute outside of the office with her. I know how crazy and unhealthy that sounds, that experts everywhere will say you need time away to recharge and refuel blah blah blah. When you only see your child for an hour and a half a day during the week, it’s just not that easy.
I’ve been walking around with a massage gift certificate in my wallet for a year and a half because I just couldn’t shake the guilt of spending that time away from my little girl (that and for a good 7 months after Olivia was born, I couldn’t fathom laying on my chest on a massage table—I was sure I’d leak everywhere, which is the opposite of relaxing!).
So I made the decision that this day would be for me, and to make sure I couldn’t wriggle out of it and just take Olivia to the park or something, I booked three back-to-back appointments at the spa. I was finally cashing in some of the gift certificates I’d received for my past two birthdays! Sure, I took Olivia to daycare later than normal and picked her up a few hours early, but the time in between—that was mine. And let me tell you, I made the most of it.
I went straight to Starbucks after the daycare drop-off and savored every drop of my chai tea latte on my way to the spa, where I was massaged, manicured and waxed to within an inch of my life. After my appointments, I grabbed a salad at the café next door and then did a little window shopping. It was exhilarating! And you know what? I did feel refreshed and recharged, not guilt-ridden and awful like I thought I would feel by taking a day for myself.
These spa days will be few and far between (in large part because I’m now out of gift certificates), but I think I’ll put a little more effort into taking some time for myself. It makes me feel like me again, which I think makes me a better mom and a better wife.