What Would You Do With 36 Hours of Alone Time?
To be or not to be
As an over-scheduled working mother of two pre-teens, nothing else represents freedom like being home alone for the weekend. Many may fantasize about a luxurious holiday abroad — and I do too, my European Airbnb wish list is growing daily — but this weekend, I get the rare pleasure of the house to myself, sans kids and partner. Yippee!
The skies are dreary with rain, it’s cool enough to pull my flannelette PJ bottoms from the back of the closet, and I have 36 hours of uninterrupted time to do with what I want. I’m giddy with possibility as I type this.
As the deadbolt snaps into place, I lean against the front door to consider my options:
- Finish reading the last 384 pages of my novel. It’s an appalling story line, completely farcical, but it feels like a luxurious waste of time to read average work that doesn’t benefit me in any way. I’m strapping myself in for the gluttony of reading for reading’s sake instead of optimizing my health, wealth or self.
- Watch those Rom Com shows on my Netflix wish list that my family would most definitely mock me for. The ones that may me feel like I’m a 20-something branching out into the world of love. Oh wait, I was married with kids in my 20s. Scratch that. The ones that make me feel like I’m a 30-something venturing back out into the world of love. And heartbreak. And varying qualities of sex, most of it as beige as the novel I’m reading. Still, I’ll relish the judgement-free time.
- I’m going to read my morning formula aloud. Recent studies suggest reading aloud improves retention, motivation and attitude. I could do with some extra oomph and a bit of a re-focus. The morning formula is basically a letter from my Future Self stating how expertly I’ve balanced love and achievement and raising kids and friendships and growth as a human. It’s a celebration of what I determine as success and a pep talk in preparation for the inevitable dips and detours on the way to said Future Self. It’s most powerful when read daily, I do it weekly at best. Maybe this weekend I’ll recite it hourly from the top of my lungs just to ensure the vision burrows deep. We’ll see.
- I’m going to eat cereal for a meal other than breakfast. Guaranteed.
- A nap is on the cards as is an early morning start to partake in some exercise. See? Balance.
- I’ve booked a facial, which almost makes me want to rustle up some Saturday night plans to get the most out of my unusually glowy, stress-free face. It’s a ‘we’ll see’. Ah, the freedom of a clear calendar.
- Create. Create. Create. Not only do I intend to consume other people’s work, I plan to pitch an article to a magazine and record my first six podcast episodes on how to rekindle your sensual spark.
- There’ll be some rekindling of my own spark somewhere there too.
The highlight of this rare patch of aloneness will be the long stretches of uninterrupted time to think, connect dots, and dream. To reclaim head space colonized by food shopping, making meals, clothes washing, deadlines and goal-striving, social engagements, asking the kids seventeen times to do anything, making small talk, driving here, there and everywhere.
So, if you’re looking for me this weekend, I’ll be indulging in this spaciousness from the comfort of my leather lounge, PJs, and the knowledge that I don’t have to do anything for anyone until Monday.