You’re going out a bit much. People are gonna start to talk..

That’s what a close family member said to me yesterday (in her defence it was probably meant as a joke). My response? Let them talk, I don’t care.

January has been filled with me trying to balance being a mum and being me – something that I’ve really struggled with past year. Being a single mum means it’s rare that I get any time to myself (I probably had about 4/5 days to myself last year). My mindset is the reason behind that. I know how hard it can be to look after a toddler so I don’t like burdening anyone (even though deep down I know they’d never see it that way) plus I don’t want to be selfish and palm my son off every week, he’s my responsibility. I’d like to sugar-coat it and say that not having any ‘me’ time doesn’t really affect me but it’s honestly been taking its toll on me both physically and emotionally, especially since my boy is a late teether and his back teeth are now breaking. I’ve had to wave goodbye to us sleeping through the night because waking up to him crying in his sleep has become my new reality.
I knew something had to change because each morning I was waking up more exhausted than the last so I checked my pride at the door and asked for help (something I hate doing, but that’s a whole other post). My dad, Aunts and Baby Daddy stepped up (although the latter didn’t go so well, my son came back with an unexplained bruised eye and a sliced open finger. When will my BD learn that our son is a curious toddler, not a test dummy and needs to have a close eye kept on him at all times?? And his blasé attitude to it all doesn’t help. Safe to say that’s no longer an option anymore..) which gave me a few days out of the month to catch up with my friends and on some much needed sleep. Yes, sleep. I spent half of a day just catching up on sleep, the rest of it lounging about doing nothing and had an early night. I didn’t go raving like everyone expected me to. I read some of Rupi Kaur’s The sun and her flowers that I’ve been meaning to finish but haven’t had the chance, caught up on Black Mirror and slept. I also spent some much needed quality time with my Mum and treated her to a trip to The Lyceum Theatre to see The Lion King (I think it was a much needed break for her too. BTW it's definitely worth a watch! I was expecting a bunch of oversized puppets but I was blown away, even fighting back tears at one point. And the opening number. OMG.) 

But why is it so bad that I have some time to myself? Don’t I deserve it? As long as my son is left with people I trust there shouldn’t be an issue about me having some time to myself. I’m still his primary carer and 1000% devoted to him so what’s the problem? I’m starting to realise that no matter what I do I’m going to be judged harshly and so be it. I’m not going to let what other people think of my parenting methods dictate my life choices and make me unhappy. Yes, I had a few ‘days off’ in January. And yes, I enjoyed having ‘me time’ while my son was looked after by other family members. And yes, I’ll most definitely do it again.

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