Charlie O'Brien blog: I need time away from my kids

by Charlie O'Brien

Admitting you enjoy getting away from your kids for a bit still seems like the ultimate motherhood taboo.

But I need and enjoy time away and I’m not afraid to say so.

When I say time away – I’m not talking spa weekends or trips to Vegas (although both sound fun!)

My current idea of time away is a solo trip to Sainsbury’s or a coffee alone in my local shopping centre!

Luna is now four months old

Luna is now four months old

Before Christmas I did the big food shop late at night when both of my children were at home asleep with their dad – and I can’t deny it, I had a whale of a time!

Did I ever imagine that wheeling a trolley around food aisles alone would seem like heaven? Erm, nope. My standards and expectations have clearly slipped.

But there is something incredibly liberating about browsing the fat content of a yoghurt without someone screaming for milk or hanging off my leg demanding yet another snack.

Getting away, even just for an hour or two a week – makes me a better mum. It enables me to recharge my batteries and zone out of being in charge of two small humans, even if it’s just for a short while.

Spending a rare couple of hours together with Jay on his birthday

Spending a rare couple of hours together with Jay on his birthday

It doesn’t mean I love my kids any less. But even the things we love the most can become overwhelming when we’re with them 24/7.

My youngest - Luna - is only four months old and is currently exclusively breastfed which means I’m on call all day and all night. I don’t begrudge this for a second and I rarely moan when I’m summoned in the night – even if it’s the fourth time.

But I do relish the hour I get every three weeks to get my nails done and talk adult things with an actual adult person. And getting my hair done with a hot coffee and magazines to read is practically a five star trip to the Bahamas!

Luna and Noah

Luna and Noah

This weekend I’m going all out for afternoon tea AND takeaway night in with the girls and I can’t wait. In reality I will probably be summoned by my husband who can’t feed a boob-loving baby, but I am going to give it a go.

And not feel guilty about it.

Charlie X

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