Okay, Moms. You have an opportunity to go away for the weekend with a girlfriend. Your husband has graciously supported you, and agreed to take care of the kids alone for the weekend. Do you:
A) Write him a hundred notes, explaining detail-for-detail every little nuance of the kids’ schedule, from how to pack the backpacks for school, to the exact right setting on the toaster for their waffles.
B) Let go, and let him do things his way. The routine will be a bit different, but the kids will survive.
C) Skip the trip. They’ll never survive without you.
I chose option A and a half. Meaning, I chose to let go and let him do things his way…but I still wrote about 25 detailed notes. I couldn’t help myself.
I feel very lucky to be married to a guy who is not only a great Dad, but who is also very capable and confident with the kids. But he goes off to work each day, while I manage things at home, so naturally he doesn’t know all of the ins and outs of our day. For example, after school I always empty the kids backpacks immediately, sign any papers and return them to the backpacks for the next day. When I make my daughter’s lunch, I always open her snack bar and then seal it with a piece of folded tape, creating a pull tab for her (because she has a difficult time opening it on her own).
I’m one of those Moms who has to fight her inner inclination to be a helicopter parent. God forbid my daughter should open her backpack at school and her daily folder isn’t in there, right? And what if my baby boy can’t find his pacifier for his nap because my organized system for keeping one in each room (practically) fell apart in my absence?
Good grief, right? So I did it. I left only a few notes, and trusted my husband to figure the rest out on his own. An opportunity for Mom to leave for the weekend is filled with benefits for everyone in the household.
- It’s a wonderful opportunity for a Stay-at-Home Mom to experience the emotion of missing her children. I mean honestly…how could I ever miss their cute little faces and long to hug them if I am never away from them? Sounds funny, but it’s that old saying..absence makes the heart grow fonder. A break can be great for your relationship with the kids.
- The above is also true for your relationship with your husband. A couple of days apart can be very healthy. A little alone time feels good. And the reunion is always sweet.
- Leaving the kids alone with Dad enables them to bond on their own terms. It’s great for Daddy to have the opportunity to call the shots and care for the kids in his own way. My husband takes the kids out for donuts, lets them stay up a little later, and plays hide and seek with them. For those few days, he is their sole source for comfort, play, security and fun. Sometimes Mommy needs to get out of the way and let Daddy enjoy his kids on a deeper level.
- And lastly…what we’re all thinking…Mommy leaving for a couple of days gives Daddy the opportunity to see EXACTLY WHAT GOES ON WHEN HE ISN’T HOME! While I was away, my husband was solely responsible for the laundry, meals, bedtimes, carting kids around to run errands, getting them ready for school…etc etc. And he did a great job.
[bctt tweet=”Reasons to leave your kids alone with Daddy for the weekend #momlife “]
So don’t be afraid to leave, Moms. I know some Dads are better equipped than others to fly solo with the children, but I bet if you give him a chance, he’ll surprise you. And he’ll make some very special memories with the kids. It’s worth coming home to a messy house or to some undone details… Let go, and let him give you the gift of a couple of days away.