Friday, June 22, 2012

15 things I've learned from a week without kids

My babies are gone this week. Yes, all week. They are with their grandparents, getting spoiled, swimming, drinking chocolate milk, and driving a golf cart through a pole barn. (Nobody got hurt.)


in no particular order
  • I actually eat less because I am not eating in a panic. I don’t eat because I’ve found 30 seconds when nobody needs anything and I might be hungry later so I’d better eat now. I just eat when I’m hungry.  Weird.
  • I am nicer to our pets. I actually have affection and patience to spare for the furry critters.
  • I still think like a kid.  My thoughts think as if they are here. The children are stuck in my head.
  • I notice the tractor and I want to say “Hey, look! A tract-y!” or “Look that cloud looks like a turtle!” We finally got some rain, and it was beautiful, warm and heavy. I wanted to say “It’s raining! Let’s go outside on the trampoline!” I was sad that they were not there to frolic in it with me. 
  • I am not hurried. I can change plans and say “whatever” and “whenever you want to eat is fine with me honey,’ and I actually mean it.
  • I enjoy cleaning, because it is going to stay that way for more than 30 seconds. I even get creative after the room is clean. For example, I created a little school house corner in our basement using their leftover supplies from school, a chalkboard, and tiny chairs. Then I made a music center with the drums, guitar and karaoke machine. No longer on damage control, I can see new ways to use the space in my house.
  • I stay up late. I don’t anticipate a little body in my bed at 615 am demanding food. I don’t have to jump out of bed and run All. Day. Long. I can ease into tomorrow, so I can stay up later tonight.
  • I look my husband in the eye. We talk and we play. I remember how much I like him.
  • I discovered I do actually get writer’s block. When I only have naptime to play with words, I am always interrupted before I am done playing. When they were gone for a week, I actually had moments of staring at the screen, not knowing where to start. I never imagined that could happen to me. (No worries, friends. I just cleaned something or ate something and went back at it.)
  • I’m boring, or at least, much more serious. I thought I was “fun mommy” for the sake of my kids, but I think just having them around makes me much more fun than I ever would be without them. I wrote more about serious stuff. I missed their constant new material. I even took pictures of the cat. (Which I then used to write a story and send it to the kids. Pathetic.)
  • I need less sleep. Caring for six children is actually physically taxing on a person. Not taking care of them, much less so. Who knew.
  • I interrupt myself. Writing, even listening at church, I noticed myself interrupting myself. It’s almost like interrupted thought has become a habit, and if their squeaky little voices aren’t there on cue, then I interrupt myself.
  • I don’t sit still. My task-oriented self still buzzes along as if it HAS to go full speed 100% or the time. I don’t sit still, I don’t do nothing, unless my husband is around to “make” me watch a movie or something.
  • I like books. One afternoon, the internet was down, so I worked in the yard.  Then, I got stung by a hornet on the bottom of my foot. After yelling and dancing around for awhile, I realized I would not be accomplishing any more work today. So I sat. And I read this book. (You should check it out.)
  • I remember whose they are. They're not my possessions, they are just on loan from God for a season. I remember that when I worry and can do nothing but pray for them. They are His.
  • I ache for them. I walk by their clean rooms and see the holes where they should be. I call them just to chat. I count the days (two more!)  I resist making a crafty countdown, but just barely.  

As exhausting as it is to do my job every day, I know I am made to do it. I am refreshed, and ready to go back to work. I'm ready to be mom again, and I'll do it with fresh energy and deep gratitude. 

Would you like to see them? I would.
My babies, oldest to youngest:











Tell me parents, have you ever taken long breaks from your mommy job?
What did you learn?


23 comments:

  1. We haven't taken a long break from the kids yet . . . just overnights- but I do miss then come the morning! I think our first long break will come in September when we head out of town for a wedding- 4-5 days w/o the kids- we will see how that goes!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alessia, I am sure you will have a wonderful time... as wonderful of a time as you can when you feel like you are missing an arm! :)

      But it's good for them, and for you as a couple too :)

      Delete
  2. It's interesting how much we can learn about ourselves apart from being Mommy! Glad you had a productive week....Enjoy the hugs when they return :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OH I will! The reunion is always like a little foretaste of heaven!
      (too bad the foretaste only lasts an hour or two.. but I'll take it!)

      Delete
  3. Emily-this is so funny, and I can completely relate! Loved the last one especially : ) Enjoy your me-time, and get refueled.
    Blessings,
    Ann

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Ann! I haven't accomplished exactly everything I'd hoped, but I AM refreshed and that matters more I think :)

      Delete
  4. Hi! I love your blog! Following you from the Aloha Friday Blog Hop! I would appreciate the follow back! Thanks! -Kat

    http://mom-uncensored.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Kat, and welcome! Heading over to check out your spot now!

      Delete
  5. Brilliant Post! What I want to know is how do have time to maintain an amazing blog while having 6 kids!!! Impressive!
    Megan
    HATCHEDit.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Megan, it's pretty easy... you just have to neglect other important things. For example, I have 2 baskets full of ironing I should do but.. here I am :)

      Welcome! Hope to hear from you again!

      Delete
  6. Wow! 6 kids! I think it gets easier as they get older. You don't have to dress them, feed them throughout the day (one cooked meal a day is fine and they can take care of the rest). So many people warned me about the teen years, but I love my two teenagers! They're wonderful! I also have an 11 year-old and a 4 year-old.

    I'm your latest follower.

    You might like my mom blog based on my e-book at http://happymomshappyhomes.blogspot.com

    and my parenting blog at http://abooksandmore.blogspot.com

    Tina - Christian, wife, mom of 4, author, and blogger of 5 blogs

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tina- I LOVE when people give me hope for the teenage years... thank you so much!!!
      So glad you stopped by and hop you come back soon!

      Heading off to check out your blogs now! (wow, 5 blogs!? It's fun, isn't it!)
      Emily

      Delete
  7. I've learned that my 13 year old son still needs hugs from his Mommy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw. Now that's a wonderful thing to learn :)

      Delete
  8. Hi Emily Cook. Just wanted to say that your children are absolutely gorgeous! You must be so proud of them! And secondly I loved this post. I especially loved the bit about not eating so much as I can totally relate to just cramming food in your mouth because you don't want to be hungry later on when you don't have time to eat. And the thought of ever getting to a point in my life where I don't need so much sleep or feel so hurried also made me smile! Sounds like you deserved your vacation and that you are ready to get them back!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw, thank you!
      As far as the eating- i think it is something we have to do to survive as mothers. Because we really might get hungry later, and then what? Grumpy mommy!? :)

      I get them back today... hooray! We're going on "vacation" together this week- though I have already told myself that this week without them was the actual relaxing vacation- the week with them will be fun, but not relaxing!!! :)

      Delete
  9. I love this list! FYI When they are grown and don't require as much of your time, this list will still hold true! Once a mom, always a mom!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Mindy! I have no idea what to expect when they are older... I will still be mom, but mothering differently... I'm sure I will still love and hate my "time off!" :) I always pray "God grow me up as you grown them up!"

      Delete
  10. I can completely understand you list and I am a full supporter of making time for yourself and your husband without the kids. Your list made perfect sense and I too find myself talking like a child even when no one is around. The other day I found myself still blowing bubbles when my daughter had already lost interest and wa;led away. :)
    I am your newest follower.
    Jillian
    http://puzzlemecomplete.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do not know what I would do without time to recharge... and time to remember that I do love the man I love! :)

      Thanks for coming by! Heading off to check your site now!

      Delete
  11. So rare that I'm without my little "companions", but if ever so, I've found all of the above to be so true! Hope you enjoyed your time ;)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am so with you on the eating thing. I realize this every meal, but yet continue to eat hurriedly. <y oldest is leaving for 3 weeks this summer. I do not know how I will do without her . . .

    ReplyDelete
  13. Emily,
    Fun post to read! :) I could write 15+things I've learned from my husband being in Ecuador for almost 2 weeks! :) Relaxing would not be part of it! HAHA! :) Thanks for sharing on Saturday Show & Tell at Cheerios and Lattes last weekend! We love having you join us and hope to see you again this weekend! See you soon!
    Mackenzie :)

    ReplyDelete

Web Analytics