Routine isn’t my thing at all. I say that with a sarcastic smirk on my face because as a stay-at-home-mom of children ages 5 and under, my life consists of a series of routines. I rebel sometimes by not complying with set schedules, but then the laundry piles up and I pay the consequences later. So it really is best to stick to the plan and attempt to stay on top of to-do lists, household chores and, most importantly, make time with the little ones.
Ever so often, I feel entrapped in these routines, which tend to turn into invisible walls closing in on me. It is then, that I desperately need an escapade. Last weekend said escapade came in the form of an international reunion of high school friends. I say international because two Mexican and two Venezuelan women traveling from different parts of the U.S., Canada and Mexico met in Chicago for two days of FREEDOM.
Freedom from household chores, freedom from acting like a role model in front of children, freedom from work, freedom from schedules and planning and organization. Freedom to be ourselves in a way that we can only be outside of the day-to-day life.
It was one of the happiest times for me so far this year. Aside from spending time with great friends in person sipping cocktails, this little trip provided each of us with the opportunity to talk. Really talk. You know that type of talk where you are able to connect with one another in a deep, honest way? The kind of talk that you don’t necessarily have every day? It was healing, refreshing, empowering. I felt like myself again.
Not that I’m not myself as a mom, but it is as if a big part of me (some dreams, some goals, some feelings) are pushed aside because there is always someone else’s needs that I have to tend to. By not having any responsibilities for a couple of days, I was able to reconnect with those parts of me that are usually just ghosts floating around my head. And I felt happy and complete, ready to share and to listen.
Between laughter, food and good music, a chain of conversations erupted.We talked one-on-one, we talked in pairs, we talked as a group. The whole weekend was a compilation of deep, fun, encouraging talks. It was as if all of us were waiting for this weekend to open up our hearts and let everything go. We listen to each other’s obstacles, we helped lift up our spirits and dust off our shoulders, and we felt validated and heard and supported.
Back in the train heading home I couldn’t wipe off the smile of my face. I felt complete, happy and filled with energy.
Routine will probably never be my thing. Motherhood (and I guess life in general) will always make some parts of me dormant. But if I get to enjoy every escapade as much as I enjoyed last weekend’s, then it will all be worth it.