I Went on a Trip and Didn’t Miss My Family
Last week I was at a blogging conference in San Jose for four days and I didn’t miss my family.
I talked to my kids over Facetime, and texted my husband every now and then… but I did not physically miss their presence, and I am okay with knowing and saying that.
You see, I work from home and I have two boys – one who is two and home with me all the time, and another who is six and home with me for the summer. I also have a husband who currently travels all week and is only home for weekends which leaves me with NO BREAK EVER.
While I am fairly successful at what I do for work, what I do exists mainly online – in cyberspace. The content I create or the words I write gain momentum on the internet while I sit at home chugging coffee, typing on my keyboard, scratching a needy dog with my foot, balancing a climbing two-year old on my right shoulder, and answering five million questions that only a six year old finds to be life or death… and at some point during the day there is poop. Everyday there is crying, and everyday there is poop…
and every five seconds a little person has a tremendous need.
The dangerous, yet nimble dance that is required to answer even a single email is witnessed by no one.
I enjoyed getting away.
I enjoyed existing on my own merits as a writer… as a vlogger… as a speaker…
and not as a laundry do-er, a mess cleaner, and a lullaby singer.
I’m not saying I don’t love my children.
I’m saying it was incredibly freeing to exist for a few days without the weight of one at my ankles and another in my arms. It was hydrating to talk with other grownups about my work, their work, and then to dance at a party to songs inappropriate for children.
I recently had witty banter with adults and danced to music not sung by The Fresh Beat Band or The Wiggles.
— Jenni Chiu (@MommyNaniBooboo) July 30, 2014
I didn’t even miss my husband. I needed a little time to wander through a weekend without having to worry about another person’s needs, or time frame, or attempt to compromise on a place to eat. It felt good to not have anyone beside me, in front of me, or trailing behind me – to walk my own gait.
I reveled in stretching my limbs across the entire span of a hotel bed… and waking up because I had somewhere to be – not someone to feed.
People wanted to buy me coffee and “pick my brain”… instead of giggle and try to pick my nose.
For the few conferences I attend or speak at a year, I relinquish the duties of a wife, a mother, and a housekeeper…
I live as me… I remember the duty to myself.
I didn’t miss my family, and I feel good saying that…
because nothing hinders my ability to be present in a situation like guilt.
The autonomy was wonderful…
and short lived, which I am also okay with.
I’ve done it enough times now to know that I can go away for a few days and not ache for my family…
and when it’s over,
it can still feel good to be home.