135 weeks and 5 days | On leaving my children

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Last week I did something I’ve not done in years.

Something that, as a single girl — or even a married woman without children — I wouldn’t have thought twice about.

I went on holiday for a few days.

Without my children. Without my husband.

I had been invited away by one of my best friends; with some of her other close friends and family members. And a couple of Fridays ago eight women — who’d all been let off the parental leash — skipped off to various airports; and boarded flights to Portugal.

The Great Escape

Now, as a married woman with two small children, this is something that takes an inordinate amount of planning. And a lot of generosity on the part of your partner. Our twins are now two and a half and this is the first time I’ve ever left them for any length of time; without my husband in tow.

Any occasion I’ve left them over the last couple of years, I’ve been with their daddy (generally because we’ve managed to wrangle some childcare and gone to a festival) but the most I’ve been away for, by myself, since the boys were born is one night.

Four nights, away from motherly duties.

Three days of adult conversation (apart from the Karaoke and cocktail night — there wasn’t much adult conversation to be had that evening).

Being able to get up (or go for a nap) whenever I wanted; go to the toilet without an audience.

It was a blast from the past, not to have anyone to answer to and I’d *almost* forgotten what it was like. It was lovely to be able to read a magazine from cover to cover, drink a hot cup of tea. Eat my breakfast without any distractions (Mama, I’ve dropped my spoon/more toast mama/JUICE MAMA!!).

Laze about. Who does that these days?

The weather was a bit mixed; grey skies and a little bit of rain but, even so, it was heavenly.

Portugal_Grid2a

5 thoughts on leaving my children.

1/ It’s important to do this every once in a while.

Just to rediscover yourself again. Although you’re a wife and mother, you’re also an individual. No labels. It’s lovely to just be yourself —even if it’s just for 24 hours.

2/ Absence really does make the heart grow fonder.

I missed my three boys SO much. As they did me.

I Face-Timed them, a couple of times whilst I was away, so I did see them but it’s not the same as being in the same room. Or even in the same country. Coming home was as exciting as going away in the first place. Genuinely.

3/ The joy of a hot, uninterrupted drink should never be underestimated.

This is something you wholly take for granted, pre children. As a mother of twin toddlers I can tell you that it’s something to be treasured.

4/ It’s just as important for your partner to have some one-on-one (or in our case, one-on-two) time with their children.

My boy had such a lovely time with our sons. They went in little outings, did ‘boy-stuff’  together. And, upon my return, the Twinkles daddy actually said — and I quote —

‘What’s all the fuss about? This parenting malarkey is a doddle.

Ahem. That’s a pink ticket for another weekend away, if ever there was one ;)

5/ Finally — and this is perhaps the most important point — if you want a fully relaxing time away from your children and wish to come back feeling fresh and rejuvenated, never — I repeat NEVER — go away with seven other mothers.

A combination of freedom, late nights and too much alcohol does not a rested woman make.

The following week I felt totally and utterly broken.

Portugal_Grid1a

Regaining a Sense of Perspective

For most of us ‘normal’ people, who don’t employ the services of a full time au pair or nanny — or have willing grandparents who’ll step in at a moment’s notice — leaving our children is a real luxury.

It’s not often easy to sort out childcare for more than one night but, another thing I’ve learned is that, whilst it’s a luxury it’s also pretty important to get away every once in a while.

It gives you a real sense of perspective. Sometimes when we’re getting bogged down by the minutiae of life — dealing with toddler tantrums and trying to juggle a million and one things without dropping the metaphorical balls — we forget to be kind to ourselves.

It’s all too easy to give ourselves a hard time for the things we’re not doing and not appreciate the all things we do manage to cram in.

Having a break from my little family has given me a renewed sense of purpose and made me appreciate everything just that little bit more.

It also made me realise that looking after twin toddlers is much, much easier than trying to keep up with a group of mothers who’ve been let off the leash for a few days.

Now that is exhausting ;)

About Caro Davies

Caro Davies art directed fashion and interiors before leaving the world of design to pursue a career in social media. She can now be found chasing the light — and two small twin boys.

62 thoughts on “135 weeks and 5 days | On leaving my children

  1. I so agree with you that time away is necessary for your sanity as a mother. I wrote all about it not long ago! I always struggle to follow through with our plans for baby free time even though I know it helps so much. When i do get time away i definitely feel more energised and ready to throw myself into anything once more! #twinklytuesday

    1. 100% agree!! It’s a shame that we can’t do it that often as logistically and financially it;s just too hard to organise. The benefits of getting away are fab though. Really gives you a bit of perspective on life doesn’t it? xx

  2. Glad you had a lovely and well deserved few days away. I think all parents can benefit from this and remembering that we’re individual people too. It’s nice to know you you have another name other than ‘mummy’. #twinklytuesday

  3. What a fab thing to do! Just to have that change of life style for a few days focusing on yourself and then I can imagine how great it was to be home again too. Done :) Thanks for hosting #TwinklyTuesday

  4. I’ve done it before and I’d do it again, as you say it’s all in the organisation but really worth it. Glad you had a wonderful time and of course you missed your loved ones, but being a away a few days you appreciate the ordinary day to day life so much more. #TwinklyTuesday

  5. Awww that is lovely! It is so nice to get away sometimes and just be you for a bit, instead of a mum 24/7. I’m so glad you had a lovely time away and I agree, absence does make the heart grow fonder.

    #twinklytuesday

    Gemma xx

  6. I went to visit my sister in the US for a week in May – the most relaxing flights ever! So good to watch so many films uninterrupted. It definitely needs to happen every now and again #twinklytuesday

  7. Sounds like you had a fabulous time. They say a change is a good as a rest, so I bet you felt mentally refreshed even if you came back physically knackered #TwinklyTuesday

  8. Well done for being brave and getting away!I know I should take my own advice but more mama’s need to do this, to remember that they are still a person in their own right and that they are still important xoxo

  9. Sounds like pure bliss and well deserved too. Id be a wreck leaving Jack but then he is only 8mths old and im sure that will be different when he is mobile and destroying the house :) Hope you had a great break xx #TwinklyTuesday

  10. Wow I want one now! Although it sounds hectic ha ha! Hope you’re over it now. Your photo’s are superb. I went to Dublin for 2 days recently (alone) and it was lovely but I did miss them so much! I have another little holiday planned in the Spring and although I can’t wait I know I will feel the same! As the twins get older I relax more and feel better at having some time away :) Jess xx

    #TwinklyTuesday

        1. Thanks so much lovely :) One of the other girls left a comment to say that it should be mandatory for all mums to be given the weekend away, every once in a while. I think I may start lobbying for it ;) xx

  11. This made me really jealous! I have a night away with my hubby booked next week (Grandma is stepping into the breach) and I can’t wait!!!!!!! Nice hotel, film premiere, pretty clothes and London nightlife – real grown up stuff……… just need to get this pile of work and laundry done before I go :-( #TwinklyTuesday

  12. Sounds like absolute bliss! Am reading this as I contemplate my first night away on my own since miss was born. Sure, it’s for work, but it still feels pretty huge. You’ve made me think it might be a good idea, if only to make me remember myself before children! #twinklytuesdsy

  13. Wild women!! Looks awesome. You are SO lucky having Europe on your doorstep; Australia is amazing, but no OS jaunts here any time in the near future. Geeze, we totally need and deserve it! Working 24/7, for YEARS straight, is exhausting. Good on you. I shall toast you later on. Anna #TwinklyTuesday

    1. Aaah thanks so much Anna!! Yep — we’re SO lucky to have Europe on the doorstep. Cheap flights too, made it a very affordable long weekend. Although I felt absolutely punished at the end of it!! I need another break to get over it all!!!! ;) x

  14. Well done you Caro. Dome friends and I had an annuals girly weekend and I managed to keep going despite children. The others have none.. I am so glad I went each year. It really does one good to get away now and again.

    1. I think it’s so important to get away — even if it’s in the same country!! Just to have a bit of distance so everyone can remember how much they love each other and how much we do, in our day to day lives xx

  15. Well by the looks of your photos it seems you had a fab time, mummy guilt always steps in at times doesn’t it but like you say absence makes the heart grow fonder, I’d be happy to get away from the hubby’s snoring ;) #twinklytuesday

  16. I had a night away with girlfriends a couple of years ago, it was loads of fun, but we spent all night talking and I came home shattered! Think I needed a few extra days! #TwinklyTuesday

    1. That’s EXACTLY what happened Mac!!! We stayed up til past 2 most nights, talking and unwinding. I was absolutely punished last week as a result!! Totally ruined and went to bed at 9pm, as a result!! xx

    1. He’s a real darling for letting me go. And even better — the morning that I went and I was stressing out a little bit, he said ‘go and enjoy yourself — you deserve it’. Awww. Just hearing that made it feel OK to go and let my hair down.

      PS — Can I come with you to the child free beach???? ;) xx

  17. sounds like you had a ball! I’ve yet to sample the delights of a childfree break, we talked about going away on a second honeymoon when we hit 10 years whilst honey mooning with out toddler. it never happened, instead we went on the most amazing family holiday but we do still talk of our city breaks we’ll have one day. #twinklytuesdays

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