My small girl looked at me across the kitchen island, clearly fed up with being forced to do homework, “I can’t wait until I go to college… Until I can make my own decisions and I’m in charge of my own schedule. I will do whatever I want, whenever I want.”
I know better, right?
I remember thinking the very same thing. I’m not quite that old. I remember luxuriating in the thoughts of free time, glorious, delicious free time.
Time for me…just me.
I could ‘play with my friends’, (whenever I wanted) I could turn the music up loud, I could be outside, free to roam as I pleased….with no one to tell me when, or where or how.
But somehow, you grow up, and you simply trade one version of wishes for ‘me time’ for another.
Fifteen years ago, working 60+ hours a week, it seemed easier to squeeze ‘me time’ in to my week than it does now.
I could meet girlfriends for dinner.
I could lie by the pool.
I could read a book.
I could go for a walk.
I could exercise (or not).
I could watch a movie.
I could sit on the couch and do absolutely nothing.
Now… much of my ‘me time’ looks like this….
…it is more like ‘us’ time where I am frequently on the sidelines or in the stands. And while it is delightful on so many levels, I still crave solitude. The older I get, the more I find myself needing Q-U-I-E-T. Crazy, I know. I am not, by nature, a quiet person. I’ve always been a turn-the-radio-up-loud-surround-myself-by-people kind of girl. But the current pace of life has me deliberately slowing down, intentionally carving out time that requires me to just ‘be’.
I’m here to tell you, if I don’t do it on purpose, it doesn’t happen.
At the beginning of this year, I vowed that I would take at least an hour to myself each week – an hour to sit, to truly enjoy a meal, to have a glass of wine, to read a book (I’ve promised myself 52 this year and am on 13, so I’m a little behind) and to avoid all of the demands that come with being a mother, a wife and a business owner.
One hour of the week’s 168 isn’t too much to ask, is it? Sure, I should spend 49 of those sleeping, but who’s counting? (Not to mention, I’d be lying if I said I always managed to get seven hours of sleep a night anyway). It is funny…between practices, homework, last minute work and my real desire to spend time with my family, it does require a bit of a juggle on my part, but I’ve discovered that hour is much like recharging my battery – and my family gets it.
What do I do? Good food. Good wine. Good reading. And quiet. I pop in a beautiful Ristorante gourmet frozen pizza (oh the delightful options!), pour myself a glass of wine, wait all of 10 minutes and perfection….I have dinner, grab my latest read and I SIT for the perfection of ‘me time’. With the first bite delicious thin and crispy crust, I already feel ready to relax.
My home is never perfectly quiet (unless I choose my solitude when everyone is gone for practice – often a smart move) but I have to say, the older my small people get, the more lovely they are about ‘gifting’ me this time – and that alone makes me grateful.
The question is…..do you carve out time for yourself each week and if you do, how do you do it? I’d love to know. And so would Dr. Oetker.
Dr. Oetker is hosting the ‘Love Yourself Amore’ sweepstakes. Divulge what you do to treat yourself with the simple meme generator on their website for the opportunity to win some fabulous prizes. The Grand Prize is a year supply of the service of your choice – anything from grocery delivery to pet care – so seriously, what are you waiting for? Enter today!
Disclosure: Thank you to Dr. Oetker LLC and Ristorante Pizza for partnering with me and inspiring this conversation about ‘me time’. As always, all thoughts and opinions shared are mine and mine alone.