When you are single, it's pretty easy to put your needs first.
You think, hey, I want to take a trip to Paris. Do I have enough money? Well, I have a credit card. And hostels are fun, right? Do I have a few days with nothing to do? Yup, I do.
But then you get married and have kids and well, nothing is so simple. A trip. A cross country move. A bucket list. You don't do anything so quickly anymore.
You're constantly balancing various needs. What do your kids need? What does your spouse need? What do you need?
We sacrifice for our kids. Oh my gosh do we sacrifice. And they repay us with compliments like this... My 5 year old recently said to me, "Were you alive when Abraham Lincoln was president?"
Uh no. I am old. But not quite that old.
But we can't sacrifice everything.
Because then we are just puddles of patheticness (yes, of course that's a word) and one day, as our college bound kids wave goodbye, we'll come crawling after them, "Wait! I used to be fun. I used to book trips to Paris!"
So it's important to figure out what we want. Not when our kids are in college. What do we want now. Which is how I ended up in Clearwater, Florida a few months back.
My husband and I were trying to decide what to do with the kids over vacation and he utters, "Well, seeing a Phillies spring training game is on my bucket list."
A boring baseball game is on your bucket list?!
I mean, a chance of a lifetime spring training game is on your bucket list?!
We needed to make this happen.
So we did.
We drove four hours to Clearwater, Florida and my husband thought the whole thing was pretty magical.
The reality is - the chaos of our lives can consume us. To the point where somebody asks, what are your hobbies? And you honestly can't remember anymore. Umm... I think I liked roller blading in 2004. Or they ask, what do you see yourself doing in five years? Well, I'll definitely still be doing laundry.
But we deserve more. As parents, we need to love our families fiercely and ourselves just as much. We need to ask ourselves, what do we want from this life that is just too short?
We have to pay attention to what's important to us. Where we want to be in this world. What do we truly want to do that we haven't bothered to even pursue.
It could be a hobby. Or a career change. Or a vacation. Or a class. Or a move. Or a friendship.
Or maybe just a drive to a baseball field during spring training.
Whatever brings us joy. We owe it to ourselves to find it.