I Never Knew I Would Need A Mom Cave - 3 Unusual Places Mom Can Take A Breather
Before I had kids I never thought about needing a place I could go to take a breather. Back then anyplace other than work pretty much served this purpose — home, vacation, the movies, a restaurant etc. I was in my mid-30s when baby #1 came along and there was a moment where we were worried about being able to have a baby at all, so of course I was all sorts of excited to be a mom and I just knew that I would want to be around my baby constantly until they were 26, relishing every moment! It wasn’t until I actually had my first child (about 2 hours after she had come into the world) that I realized:
1.) Why a mom would need or want to get away from her child(ren)
2.) The lengths I would go to to arrange everything so I could momentarily escape without the entire family being sent into a whirling frenzy in my absence.
For me, the typical ‘Man Cave’ conjures images of a windowless basement room complete with a big screen TV, leather furniture, gaming system, sports memorabilia and a mini fridge. Although I don’t really need one, I have spent some time imagining my ideal ‘Mom Cave’. This place of respite might include a day bed, a recliner, a TV with QVC access, an assortment of DVDs, bottled waters, a soothing sound machine, a laptop, heating pads, and snacks of peppermint patties, pistachios and wasabi peas. While it is nice to dream, the fact is that if I had a Mom Cave, I would feel too guilty to go into it for any length of time. If I did retreat into it, I’m pretty sure that Thing 1 and Thing 2 would be whining at the door to be let in as soon as they noticed my absence. After seeing the 2 year old manipulate the iPad, I’m also sure that short of a retinal scan, Thing 2 would be into the cave, flinging wasabi peas in less than 5 minutes.
If you’re in the same boat, I am offering you some unique (if not glamorous) retreats for moms that I have discovered in my ongoing quest for temporary alone-ness. These are places where you can get peace and quiet (or at least peace) for a few hours or even just a few minutes.
1.) Doctor’s/Dentist’s Office – This is one of my favorite mom retreats (assuming it is an appointment where the Boy and the Girl don’t accompany me). I always leave for my appointments early and I’ve even been known to linger in the office after my appointment. Take your 3 week old People magazine that you haven’t had a minute to read and luxuriate while you wait (or else you know you will be stuck reading the office copy of Parents – ugh!). I remember talking to my sister about how awesome long waits at the doctors office are once you have kids. We were talking about it like it was a visit to the spa! Root canal? Colonoscopy? Anything requiring me to drink something foul and be tested hours later? Mom Cave!
2.) Closet – Yep, I said it, the closet. I’ll admit that I am a bit closet-spoiled. Although our square footage in the rest of the house is not egregious, the master closet is massive and even has a window. Some closets may not be conducive, but some days I’d be willing to curl up on the 2nd wire shelf of the linen closet if it meant I could have 45 ‘Mommy!’-free seconds. One weekend last December I left my husband on kid duty while I retreated into the closet to wrap presents. I stole the kids mini dvd player and watched a movie while wrapping gifts and drinking my coffee for several hours. Add sound machine to drown out the occasional screaming from the first floor and it was perfect. Note: Remember to bring a snack! I went in snack-less and quickly realized that I could not show my face in the kitchen without much fanfare from the Boy and the Girl wondering where I was going and where I had been. I ended up eating the only food I had in the closet with me — the king sized pack of peppermint patties I had purchased for my sister for Christmas out of necessity. Sorry Jean. Mom Cave!