When I Don’t Have My “Alone Time”
A slight change in the schedule threw me completely off.
It has been a long-standing tradition in our house: Sunday mornings are my “time to myself.” From the time I wake up until 9:30 a.m., I can do whatever I want.
My husband takes Saturday mornings, and he chooses to sleep in. I get breakfast for our three kids and empty the dishwasher. Then I take the toddler with me to run errands at Target and Trader Joe’s while the two older kids have their Saturday Morning Screen Time. By the time I arrive home, it is 9:30 and my husband wakes and helps me unload the groceries.
Sundays are for me. I am always awake early and go down to my office, but on Sundays I know that I will have hours of time to myself. I always read Brain Pickings and a chapter or two out of a novel, plan my week, send an email to my extended family, get caught up on life.
Of course, it is never completely uninterrupted… if only my office were sound-proof. Usually I will hear a squabble of some kind and a yell for “MOMMY!” Or my husband will be cooking eggs and the toddler will wander off and appear at the French doors of my office, with her nose pressed against the glass. At some point, I’ll usually need to emerge to refill my coffee and without fail, one of the kids will try to rope me in at that point by asking me to look at a picture drawn or telling me that someone ate the last bagel.
Still, I know that I can count on that time in the week. And have learned that if I don’t have that time, I feel out of sorts.
This weekend, my husband planned to take the two older kids on a weekend getaway, which included going to a large arcade and then checking into a hotel for the night. We decided to call it a “Leap Year Treat” so that the kids don’t form an expectation that this would be a regular occurrence.
The plans were nearly thwarted when my husband had a flare-up of gout on Friday. I was sure that they would need to cancel, and braced my kids for disappointment. However, a trip to walk-in care and 24 hours of medication later, my husband insisted that he felt fine. He left with my older two kids on Saturday afternoon, leaving me at home with the toddler.