The cost and benefit


*big dramatic sigh*

When I was pregnant, I often thought that it was worse having just that very small glass of wine rather than none at all, because I’d just want more. So too with last weekend’s brief escape. My parents came up for the weekend and stayed at our house with the kids while my husband and I hightailed it outta there. Pretty much exactly 48 hours we were away and it felt like about 48 minutes. As we drove into the driveway, arriving home, I turned to my husband and said, did we even go?

It was lovely, of course. Just the simple matter of not having to plan, prepare, anticipate, pack, organise, negotiate or mediate. No thinking, pretty much, at all. We didn’t even think much about where or when to eat. We had no plan, and that, was heaven. I was blissed out just doing nothing, reading, laying around, drinking wine at 3 in the afternoon. Because I could. My husband had a little more trouble with doing nothing. He got a bit bored but I think that was for want of a good book. Mental note: next time make sure husband has good books.

We missed the kids, of course, kind of, well actually…I didn’t. I missed them in that I wanted to return to them (at some point), and in that I didn’t want them to be someone else’s kids, but no, I didn’t actually miss them. I had the post holiday blues before I even got home and I wanted another day. It has actually taken me a few days to write about this because I was feeling so down when we came back. I felt like the life got sucked right out of me again. Kids take more than they give there’s no doubt about that. It’s this inexplicable, altruistic, parental love that keeps pulling us back in. That and the cute way they look at you when they know they’ve done something naughty.

I remarked to my husband sometime about 24 hours in that not a single tense word had been spoken between the two of us. There was no shouting to be heard above the din, no snippy comments about whose turn it was to change the nappy bomb and no stress in our tired bodies to drain away any desire for conversation. Within an hour of arriving home, I could feel the tension creeping back in my body, my sentences shortening, my tone hardening and my head packing full again with no space for anything so luxurious as communicating.

It’s hard. Sometimes it’s just hard.


10 responses »

  1. It is. It really is. A few weekends ago we did the same but with the twins (now nearly 21 months old) and even that made a big difference. It was so much more relaxed. I can’t wait ’till my man and I hightail it outta here ourselves for a weekend. Soon, grasshopper, soon!

    • If we went with the twins it would be actually more stressful than just staying at home. Our forays into family holidays have not been terribly successful so far. Ours are nearly 21 months too! Must have been late July 2010 yes?

      • July 18 so somewhere in the middle of the month. Looking forward to their birthday this year. 🙂 Things are getting better now that they’re walking (well one is, the other almost – she’s slower). Also we’ve identified the main stress factors of our last family holiday (lack of space, weather, me being sick for one week of the two) and will do Everything In Our Power to avoid those.

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