Monday, February 25, 2013

For When You Want to Get Away

Lately I have been desperately wanting a break. A break from waking up early, a break from chores, a break from my kids, a break from writing, and a break from thinking. It seems there is no time or place to find that truly quiet space where I can gather my thoughts and recharge my mind. I love my family and I dread missing out on valuable time with them. But lately I’ve just wanted to escape to a Caribbean island, allowing the sun to warm my body and staring out at the beautiful blue water, immersing myself in peace.

But then I think about how if I were actually there, by myself, finally able to quiet my mind, I would just end up thinking about how much I miss those crazy kids.

So, then, if a Caribbean getaway isn’t the solution to calming my mind, then what is?
Now that I am well into my years as a mom, I understand so much more about why my own mom did things. I understand why she needed those catnaps in the afternoon or why she rested on the couch after dinner was over. I understand why she sometimes had to say no when I asked her to play with me. I understand why she got worried or frazzled by so many things. Like me, she too was overwhelmed and frustrated and tired. She, too, had too many things to do in a short amount of time. But unlike me, I never, ever, heard her complain about being tired. She just went and lied down.  I never heard her complain that she had to cook dinner, she just did it. I never heard her complain that she wanted to be by herself, she just accepted that her kids were always with her (or she dropped us off at grandma’s house!).   
The truth is things are the way they are. I could continue to fight them and be miserable, or I could wake up every morning and accept them, accept that I have young kids and they are going to test my limits, accept that I am tired and decide to do the best I can anyway, and accept that my duties right now are those of a stay-home mom, to take care of the house and the food and the errands. I could accept that all of these things are sometimes a little bit harder because I am a military wife (okay, a lot harder!), and remember my faith that there is a bigger plan, a good plan, for all of the challenges I face in my life.

If, for now, my Caribbean paradise is five short minutes in the car as I drive to the grocery store, or just one chapter of the book I’ve been trying to read for months, I’ll take it. With fewer complaints and the right perspective, my getaway can be much closer than it seems.     

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