I am on a kid-free vacation.
I am alone in the warm Southern Arizona desert with my husband. No children around me. No diapers to change. No house to clean. No whining to listen to.
Just an occasional phone call from a kid to complain that the babysitter asked them to practice or from a kid telling me how fun that the babysitter made playdoh.
For weeks, I have anticipated this trip. I have been thrilled to have some alone time with my husband, excited to have some alone time with me! I've even gone so far as to say, "I think I even deserve a few days to myself." We haven't taken a trip alone since we had only three children. But this trip is ever reminding me that there is no denying, who I am. I am a mom. I have been reminded of it constantly.
Even, on a kid-free vacation...
When I sat down on the plane, I was excited to sit and read and enjoy some peace and quiet, but I kept watching the family in front of me...
The poor mother, who was trying to read her book, kept getting interrupted. First it was to find the cereal, then pour some milk from her Starbucks cup, then look for a spoon in her expansive carry-on. Then bless her heart, all of those things were returned to her, empty and used. I know the drill, being a garbage can is part of being a mother. I couldn't help but smile. Though I allowed her mothering to interrupt my non-mothering vacation. I am a mom. I wanted her to be able to read her book uninterrupted. It didn't happen. She is a mom.
As the plane ride was approaching landing, the young boy in front of me, was speaking loudly. He had ipod headphones on, and so of course, was compensating with a loud voice... The dad kept 'shushing' him, obviously, so he wouldn't annoy the people around them. If my kids had been with me. I would have been doing the same thing. That is one of the jobs of a parent, 'shushing kids' so they do not annoy others. It wasn't annoying me. It made me smile. I understood. I am a mom.
As I sat at on the hotel patio, during 'cocktail hour', sipping my Sprite, while my husband mingled with sprinkler associates, I couldn't help but notice the family that was passing by on their way to the pool. The young children wanted to stop and watch the goings-on. The parents trying unnoticabley to hurry their children on. Even a simple walk to the pool isn't always straightforward. Even though I was enjoying my quiet solitude, I am a mom. I understood.
When I approached my room, yesterday afternoon, I saw a galloping tween in front of me stop at the room next to mine. With gusto and energy, he unlocked his door. I smiled that a child was in the room next to me. I have been concious of checking my family of seven into a hotel room before, hoping the occupants of nearby rooms, don't see us enter. I am always relieved when other children are nearby. I hope the energetic tweens parents, don't shush him too much in their room. I am a mom. I understand noise.
Sitting at the hotel grill, eating my sandwich, I smiled as a young family approached. Thankful, that today I was eating my sandwich without breaking off bite-size pieces, and drinking from a straw that wasn't being shared with anyone else. There was no back-wash in my water.
When I want to go and sit by the pool, I am aware that I only have one swimsuit to put on and I only have one thing to carry, my book. I notice I have no floaties, no swimming diapers, no snacks. It is just me. I read when I want, I people watch when I want. Yesterday, I watched another mom, and I sighed a smile. It didn't feel quite right. I am a mom, yet for now, no one is sitting on me wet, and no one has said to me, "Watch me Mommy." It was odd when I stood up to leave the pool and heard no one whine when I was ready to leave.
I am a mom.
I can't escape it. Once a mom, always a mom.
Even on a kid-free vacation.