I am a mom. I don’t do me time. Except when I am reading Good Housekeeping or Femina or one of those million women’s magazines that go blue in the face extolling the virtues of leaving the children behind in the able care of your husband/mother/mother in law/maid and snatching a cup of coffee in the cafe or a massage in the spa. It all sounds quite delicious, having the children out of your hair at least for a while and having some divine smelling promises-to-make-hair-great concoction in it instead.
Sounds good? Certainly! Sounds doable? Well it depends on how well oiled and supported your home machinery is. In many cases it requires an obscene amount of planning, so much so that I have a friend who plans coffee/tea/anything as long as it’s out of the house and away from the kids every month with me only to cancel a couple of days before we are meant to meet. “It requires so much planning and coordinating with mother in law or the husband that giving up and staying home seems a better option,” she jokes.
There’s another friend who worked for several years before deciding to quit and be home with the kids. “There was a time when I could just pick up my bag and walk out of the house. I don’t know what it is but I cannot do it anymore. The moment you become a stay at home mom, your personal time seems to disappear. I am now the husband’s secretary on call, the kids personal chef cum craftsperson cum books and toys organizer,” she says and it sounds like someone’s repeating the voices in my head.
My biggest problem with me time? The after effects. There I am sauntering home after a lovely time at the bookstore or movie hall or the restaurant thinking I should get out more often when I open the door and enter home only to find the living room carpeted with toys which are all mixed up (think Monopoly merging with Pictionary, Mastermind with Snakes and Ladder and Scrabble) ; the child hasn’t finished his dinner and has snacked on chocopie instead; both kids are sleepy and waiting for their (equally sleepy) loving mother to put them to bed.
Think I can summon the courage to go out the next time around?⊕