Summer Without My Kids. Why Doesn't This Feel Right?
Moms love to get free time. But what happens when they actually get it?
Well, I'm about to find out. Thanks to my post-divorce visitation agreement, I am writing this post on the plane to drop my children to their father in London for a six-week visit.
It sounded good in the beginning. I was definitely doing my mental happy dance at 6 weeks of freedom, and telling all my friends of my single mom gone wild plans for the rest of the summer, but the closer the date came, the more uneasy I became. Now, I've been sick in my stomach for three days.
It's not that I'm one of those moms who has no identity beyond my children--I have plenty of projects to do and I'm looking forward to sleeping late. But we've never been apart for six weeks and for them to be 3,000 miles away and on another continent just makes me feel ill.
Of course, they are super excited! They haven't seen their Dad since the winter break and I've been faking my happiness for them, but I think this drop off will be the hardest thing I have to do.
I keep telling myself, "get used to it, Kimberly. This will be their life." But I'm not sure if it will ever get easier.
Meanwhile, I totally psyched myself into thinking that missing summer memories wouldn't be so bad. I have them for winter and spring breaks and all the days in between, but there's something about summer memories that make me feel like I'm missing out.
I don't know what it is about summer--the lazy days, the beach, the pool, the sunset picnics, the late night star gazing without a care about bedtimes--whatever it is, summer vacation always feels special and I'm not having much of that this year. And possibly never again.
So yes, I'll have a productive and fun, kid-free six weeks. I'll work. I'll sleep late. Take long uninterrupted baths, eat what I want to eat, hang with my girlfriends, and if all goes to plan, even go out on a few dates.
But without those summertime memories with my children, it just won't really feel like summer.