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Remember when the kids were little and we used to dream of getting away for an "adult" weekend?

Well, I just got back from one. And I have to say that although I thoroughly enjoyed it, the weekend didn't turn out quite like the action-packed getaways that I envisioned so many years ago when I was younger.  Funny how things sometimes turn out that way.

As young parents, when we gathered with our friends we were always surrounded by kids of different ages and characters. Some were quiet and well behaved, others were noisy and rambunctious. Some were kind little angels, other were whiny and annoying. Either way, it seemed we could never get through a conversation without being constantly interrupted by questions, crying, bullying, or (if we were lucky) hugs and kisses.

So we dreamed of having adult weekends. We planned who would look after the kids. We discussed how we would get to go to this place and that. We vicariously visited retreats filled with vigorous adult activities such as skiing, hiking, horseback riding, bungee jumping and, of course, shopping till we dropped. Full of excitement about everything we would do, see, and experience, we couldn't wait for that day to come.  Who knew it would take nearly 20 years to get here!

Fast forward to last weekend. Twenty of us arrived at a fancy spa for an adult weekend retreat. Our mission? To eat healthy, exercise, read, relax, do yoga, and socialize.

Upon checking in, we were separated into two groups - the "boys" and the "girls" - all of whom were Fabulously40 and beyond.  I couldn't help but smile at this arrangement.  It seems like nothing really changes with age.

pool

We started our adult weekend by relaxing at the pool, leaving our lounge chairs only for a massage appointment or to use the rest room. Every time someone suggested an activity that would require us to use anything other than our jaw muscles, we all cringed and remained stretched out in our lounge chairs.  So much for yoga, hiking, etc.

After a day of sunning by the pool, we gathered for dinner. Initially, we sat next to our husbands. But by the time dinner was over the girls sat with the girls and the boys sat with the boys, who engaged in a "heated" discussion over the weather. Let's face it, only girls have meaningful conversations.

The girls listened to each other's stories. For most of us, the kids have grown up and the challenges are now very different. Instead of sharing stories about how kids bite and don't do their homework, we talked about finding jobs and dating and weddings that are not very far away.

We confessed to trying to figure out how to keep our kids near home, and how to spend more time with them without intruding on their schedules. And we talked about future vacations we should all take our kids on.

After a day and a half of bonding, reconnecting, and recharging our batteries, we said our goodbyes and drove away. On the way home, my husband and I couldn't stop talking about how fast it all happened. Just yesterday our kids were little babies, and the idea of an adult weekend was only a dream. Today we find ourselves with more time on our hands and more adult weekends available than we ever imagined. Yet, all we could think about was getting back to our kids so we could hug them, have dinner with them, and spend more time with them.  

Who would have thought that all of those times when we dreamed of an adult weekend, the outcome would be so bittersweet?

All the best,



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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cheryl Phillips wrote Sep 16, 2008
    • Oh this is so, so true. I have both older (22, 24) and younger (8, 10 ,13) children so I’ve sort of been thru this twice. I’m single (7+ years) so when I was first divorced, I really needed my free weekends every few weeks. It was nonstop at that time with a 6 mo. old girl, 3 & 5 yr old boys and teenaged daughters 15,16. So, at that time I lived for a break.

      Times have changed. I traveled a few times over the past few years for a few days/week out of state for either work conferences or just a getaway. I tried to time these when my kids were with my ex, but sometimes it flowed over a day or so. I missed them by the end of the first day.

      I still have every other weekend free. It’s so quiet in the house. I cannot stand it. I call my older daughters and if they aren’t busy I take them to lunch or bribe them with dinner. Sometimes I’ll just relax and do nothing but I’m not the type to sit still unless by force (like my knee surgery), so I missed the companionship...the hectic pace...the noise. Go figure.

      Now I am dating someone who is over the top special to me. A connection that’s been long over due. He has sons exactly the same ages as my sons. Last weekend I not only had the great companionship of Anthony, but got to go to the movies with his sons. It made things feel so much more normal.

      Me with 5 kids dating someone with two? Absolutely. I live for my quiet moments...but they come every night at 9 when my kids go to bed. That’s enough for me. I love family more than anything.........getaways are great, but I think they are just a way to appreciate what’s at home.  

      Great post, Yana. I can relate.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Nikki W wrote Sep 17, 2008
    • I think that looking forward to getting home to the children is part of the joy of getting away for an adult weekend. I adore my girls and I miss them when I’m away, but I also value a few days away with my husband...precious time alone that we get every couple of years.

      At the begining of October Richard and I are off to Barbados (one of my favourite places) for a long weekend together. My girls will be well cared for by their grandparents. When we all get back together we will all have stories and news to share of what we got up to whilst we were apart.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cynster wrote Sep 17, 2008
    • *My hubby and I are empty nesters and the adult longing for the weekend never goes away.  We look forward to our weekends together.  Wither it’s and event to attend, dinner out, movies out/at home, cookouts, weekend getaways or  listening to smooth Jazz at home or in a park.  The weekends are our time to do things we like.  Plus no babysitter required.  Lovin it!

      Cynster

      _

      _

      !



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janita Friend - Melbourne - Australia wrote Sep 20, 2008
    • Totally agree with this being a catch 22 situaton!  My husband (to-be - wedding set for 22 November) and I get to escape often due to our younger children spending time with their other parents ... but I am already apprehensive and a little fretful at the thought of the lovely honeymoon we have planned in Thailand.  Two weeks alone in a tropical paradise, such a luxurious, longed for holiday with my wonderful man who I am desperate to have have an indulgent time with.  But 2 weeks away from my 8 year old baby?  Ouch!
      Bittersweet in deed!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Sep 20, 2008
    • Well...I guess I am just an old fogey.  Right now....my husband and I are on different wave lengths.  He is having an affair with his new television and I am off doing my own thing.....shopping and scrapbooking.  What is wrong with that picture?  Maybe when the other son moves out...the romance will be rekindled...but for now with my per-menopause....I could care less if I am ever touched by another man!!!!   LOL
      Again...what happened?

      **I know ya’ll are going to think...what a nut she is!!!!!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Shari Tenner wrote Sep 21, 2008
    • Put away that scrapbook, throw out the remote and reconnect immediately before the distance to reconnect is too great!  Don’t wait, take it from someone who is distanced from her spouse only to have him find someone on the internet to fill his time and reconnect with.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Sep 21, 2008
    • slatrn....I’m sure you are right....but mine is not going anywhere....and neither am I. We will get it back...it’s just for now...I’m enjoying my scrapbooking and he’s enjoying that new television..and I am too...to a degree.  He and I have been through too much together to give it up now.  We’ve been married 24 years.  Thanks for your suggestion though...you are right.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Amazingrace wrote Sep 21, 2008
    • Hi all. As a single mom I long for a few stolen moments and then when I get them... I miss my boy. It’s tough, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I was a late bloomer - met hubby and had baby right away - at 39! So I have a 7 year old at 46! He keeps me young and he is the best company!
      Great post!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Erin50 wrote Sep 23, 2008
    • Yana, the girls at the office have been talking about a girls only weekend at the beach for years.  We have yet to make that trip materialize, but am hoping it will eventually happen.  The sun, sand, a Bahama Mama and girl talk sounds heavenly!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Sep 23, 2008
    • This coming weekend...I am going with a girlfriend of mine to Hilton Head Island for some R & R. My niece lives there and she will be gone so we are staying at her house and planning to vegetate on the beach all day Sat. and part of Sunday.  It’s always great to get away without the family.  It gives them a break from me and vice versa.  Everybody needs a break.  I am sooooooo ready.......



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