Girls Trip or Guilt Trip?

My life has been beyond crazy lately. Non-stop camping trips, cleaning after the camping trips, afternoon cocktails to get me through the cleaning after the camping trips, hosting BBQ’s, my kid’s joint birthday party, running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off, getting my kids ready for the upcoming school year, more BBQ’s and my annual girl’s trip. Having no time to even brush my teeth most days reminded me just how needed that girl’s trip was.

Every year, my sister, KC, our cousin, Kati and myself go on girl’s trips. The first year was Lake Tahoe, then Mammoth, then the wine country and this year was a trip to the Madonna Inn in California.

Most girls are planning and packing what they want to bring. They are counting down the hours until they are free from their husband and kids. Me, on the other hand, not so much. I was awake in the middle of most nights leading up to the trip dreading on leaving my family. I knew that my kids would be in great hands with their Dad and I knew my husband, Jay, would be enjoying his time without me nagging, but I couldn’t help it. I feel guilty going on the girl’s trip. They say that time with your friends are always needed, but when you’re a wife, a mom or you have a boss from hell, when can you actually enjoy a girl’s trip without the guilt trip?

Jay is always supportive about these trips. He even reminds me many times to start packing because I always wait until the last minute. He goes to the stores with me so that we can spend time together before I leave. My kids are always excited to get time with their Dad because he works so much that they never see him. They all say that they’ll miss me, but to go and have a blast and before I know it, I’ll be home with them. Everything is always just fine so why do I have such anxiety over it every time? When you have opportunities to have the “me” time that is very much deserved and needed, we tend to look at it as not a much-needed adventure, but instead miserable, guilt infested road trip.

Before and during the trip, I had some anxiety attacks. I called Jay multiple times a day while on the trip just to hear his voice and to talk to my kids. I thought about them every second. Every time that I saw a couple, it made me miss Jay more. Every time I saw a family, it broke me. I couldn’t help, but miss my family and feel like I needed to get home and be the wife and mom that I am. I felt like I had no right being away from my family. I was venting to KC and Kati trying to get some sort of reassurance that the girls trip was a good thing. While talking to them, they brought up a very valid point that I was blind to. Yes, I am a wife and a mom, but I am still me who needs time away from home to be with friends. Time away doesn’t make me a bad wife or mom. It is actually a healthy thing. Regrouping and recharging are very vital things that us moms have to do in order to remain as sane as we can before completely losing our minds. You have to enjoy life’s little things that time to yourself is filled with. Remember that you are still you inside and being able to explore that is an awesome thing.

Feeling the guilt, missing your family and being excited to get home doesn’t make you weird or a sad person. It makes you a great mom. A great wife. You took the time for yourself, but you know what you have at home.

The trip was filled with incredible times. Pool time for the entire day, going to the beach the next day, dressing up and going to a beautiful restaurant for dinner, picnics in the garden, game nights in our pj’s and the lovely mornings of sleeping in. It wasn’t that I was able to experience what my life was like before being married and a mom, it was that I was able to experience life as a mom and wife in another way. Talking about my kids and hubby, buying them gifts from the cute shops on the boardwalk, collecting seashells and beautiful rocks and taking pictures to show them the breath taking views that I was seeing are just a few of the moments that I was able to experience on my own, but with them in my heart. Knowing I was going back to them to give them their gifts and show them the pictures made the trip even more worth while.

On the drive home, I felt recharged. My mind was clear of all shenanigans and I was able to realize that my life at home is amazing, but my life on these girl trips is amazing too. I couldn’t wait to get home, but I also loved the time I had away on the trip. The moment I walked through my front door and I saw my kids running to me, yelling over and over again, “Mommy is home!”, made me the happiest I had been in a while.

Now that I have been home for a while and back into the wife and mom routine, I think about the trip every time I feel like I am losing my mind. When the dishes are piling up, the laundry needs folding and it’s the day of the week that I need to scrub the bathrooms, I take a deep breath and remember, I got this.

I felt like me again from the trip, but I felt whole again being home. That combo is the best combo.

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