I am filled with gratitude for the time and ability to see my friend over the past week. Being able to reconnect with her and meet her family is invaluable to me. Friday night I watched her kiddos so she could enjoy a date night. For me, this is how I like to vacation when I visit my parenting friends. I’m proud of her for being a gentle parent and honored to be welcome in her home.
She and I have had similar journeys in our life and were assigned to many of the same military instillations during our respective time in service. I have always seen her as a sort of doppelgänger friend. We met in Germany at a marriage retreat with our now ex military-husbands. Actually grew up in the same small town area of Louisiana as girls. We both strive to find healing and betterment after surviving a lot of traumatic shit. She became a parent and I did not is where our lives took notably different paths.
In truth, I do not trust myself to be a parent with my psyche struggles and popping up as the cool Aunt type works out better for me. I can love and engage with the kids then give them back to their parents. Maybe it’s a selfish choice on my part and supporting my parent friends feels like I’m giving back. Getaways are most beneficial for my psyche too. Simply changing my environment helps me mentally reset.
My goal when I’m visiting an established friend is to be a minimal intrusion on their daily life. I do not want to create inconvenience (needing a sitter) for a fleeting day of fun. So, I offer to babysit one night. I know a couples night out is a bigger asset to her life than any outing with me could be and I genuinely prefer to stay home. Maybe it is an unconventional vacation plan, it works for me.
I’ve often expressed that I just need an excuse to escape and I’m gone. Mostly I stay home and socialize online, meet new people from around the world. It’s a fairly simple life, certainly atypical and it’s mine. I know many view vacation as this very small amount of time to do all the things where they’re visiting. That sounds stressful to me and not relaxing at all, which is what I prefer getaways to be: relaxing.
I’m so privileged to be able to book a place to sleep, have my vehicle and the time to have these pop in visits. I had so much fun with baby giggles and teen shenanigans. It’s nothing compared to the monumental task of parenting and I hope I was able to bring a little extra joy into her home while I was there. I love my friend dearly and I’m grateful to have had this time with her and her family. I believe it’s important to value your people you value.
Be well, sweet souls. 💛
If you identify with the neurodivergent community, would appreciate an adult space with a focus on support and betterment, I’d like to invite you to check out my discord server! Where shame, blame and devaluation are discouraged while compassion and personal growth are encouraged. The server is designated mature (18+) and minors are promptly removed. Multiple categories allow Members to decide what sort of content they’d like to see from the server using selections in the #about-you channel after joining. You’re invited!