It’s Not a Guilt Trip: A Case for Leaving Kids at Home2 min read
Going on vacation is a wonderful opportunity. It gives you the ability to leave all of your work, stress and responsibilities at home for a few days or weeks while you relax and explore the world.
And then there’s the potential to reap some health benefits. Studies have shown that taking a vacation contributes to higher positive emotional levels and less depression, as well as lower blood pressure and smaller waistlines.
But, if you’re a parent, taking a vacation may seem next to impossible. Not only do you have to find the time to take off of work, pick a date and destination, but your kids’ needs tend to take priority.
First of all, they have a ton of stuff! Especially if they are young. Now you’re stuffing double (triple?) the amount of luggage into your car or a cab and dragging it through an airport. You’ll be working your muscles to get all of those carry-ons into the overhead cabins and opening up your wallet for checking extra bags.
Then there’s the destination. You’ll likely pick a place known for being kid-friendly if the little ones are coming.
And, let’s not forget the cost of getting all of those people on a plane, feeding them, and finding a place big enough to stay that fits you all.
Taking your kids on vacation provides you priceless memories and family time. You get to spend time together in a new place, learn new things and explore a new part of the world. And, if you have the opportunity to get the gang all together for a trip, you’re very lucky.
But, sometimes, as parents, you need time to yourselves. And while you may feel guilty leaving your kids behind, it’s important to focus on yourselves occasionally.
You can pick any destination you and your significant other want. For instance, instead of going to Disney World, you go on a wine tasting tour in France. You can also visit museums and dine at restaurants that don’t have chicken fingers on the menu.
And, maybe the most compelling reason you should go away without your children: the relaxation and “me” time. From the moment you start a family, these two things are scarce. You’re constantly on the run, dropping off and picking your kids up from school, playdates and activities. You plan your days around when your kids need you. This can be stressful and leave you with no time for yourself.
Taking a vacation and not having to worry about these things provides you with the chance to really unwind, think clearly and prioritize your life, which can be difficult to do when you are going through your everyday life.
You’ll return home feeling refreshed and rejuvenated and your children will be ecstatic to see you.
Especially if you’ve brought them home a souvenir.
Photo from click-mallorca.com.