Wow. For the first time in longer than I can remember—at least a couple of years—I was sitting at home facing a weekend with nothing that I had to do. My daughter is away at college and my son and husband were away for the weekend and I was home ALONE.
Of course I had home chores—bills to pay, papers to sort, tidying to do—but no events or activities planned. No scheduled projects to complete. No tasks that required attention. I was free to be a complete hermit and stay home and do absolutely whatever I chose for the weekend. I could be in my house and not even talk with anyone.
I was a little overwhelmed by the whole idea. After they had left and I got home from work to an empty house, it hit me. I did not have to cook for anyone, I did not have to take anyone any where or run errands for anyone. In truth, it was a weird feeling when I started to actually think about the whole reality.
In fact, I did not even have to get out of my pajamas or get dressed all day. I could stay up as late as I wanted reading and watching movies, take a nap when I wanted and fix a dinner that I wanted, when I wanted. I could even eat popcorn for dinner.
I got to pick the TV show that I wanted to watch, took a bubble bath and read a book lying in the tub for as long as I wanted and could lounge on the couch with the dogs when I was through.
I guess that, for good or bad, being alone highlights the reality of family life. I am sure that I am not unique, but I have gotten into the habit of compromising my wishes and serving others in ways that I am not even aware of it. I am not complaining. I am not criticizing. I am not being a martyr. I am actually amazed at the obvious.
Many of us go through our daily lives so connected with other people that we do not ever really focus on ourselves. Most of the time we do these things—live these connections—with no real thought about how it impacts us. I would not suggest that it is bad to be connected or involved or helpful to those we love. My observation is that it is easy to forget to take a minute to recharge and be a little self-focused every once in a while.
Actually, my weekend break was really rejuvenating. I felt a little guilty that I did not leave the house for three days except to go to church on Sunday. Still, I very much relished the me time.
The take away—we all need “me” time. It is ok to plan it and enjoy it.