And she dragged me, kicking and screaming.

So, I wasn’t going to post today. I really didn’t have anything spectacular to say and…honestly? I have a lot of messes going on at home lately. I have piles of clothes to be sorted; a homeschool room to be organized; toys to be purged; laundry to be laundered; children to be fed; PiYo to do; calories to be counted; toilets to scrub; prayers to be said; devotions to be done; and the list goes on and on…all the while the pool is calling my name for a couple more weeks. However, my TimeHop app sent me a picture today and it prompted the following thoughts.

A year ago, I hadn’t been out with friends for about 18 months. When I mean “out with friends,” I mean…like out, without kids. There wasn’t really a reason I hadn’t been out; I’ve never been a big Ladies-Night-Outer, I just got so consumed with everything going on around here (adjusting to life as a stay-at-home-mom of four after working outside the home, being pregnant, nursing a baby, taking care of the house and other kids, working it all around my husband’s schedule, and sinking in to my own very comfortable routine of Facebook, blogging and photos, etc) that I didn’t feel like taking the effort to get cleaned up and escape for a short while and go have a coffee, conversation and a little breathing room with friends. I just didn’t feel like it. I didn’t want to leave my routine and comfort zone.

However, I have a friend named Jenny, jennyitup, JRap.

Everyone should have a JRap.

She relentlessly harassed me to leave the house with her, for just a bit, and go have fun. (You should also know we were friends for like two years before this point). Now, if you know Jenny, you know she wasn’t trying to get me to jump ship, get blindly drunk and max out the credit cards. She’s just OLDER than me a seasoned wife and mom, also has a slew of kids, and she knows that a little time off in the right environment, for the right reasons, and with the right folks, is good. Everyone needs a time-out, right? We planned. And I’m pretty sure I got nervous and canceled twice (I’m not really sorry sorry, Jenny!!). Then she basically threatened me in the most Christian way possible.

So, we negotiated.

I told Jenny I would leave the house after the baby was in bed and if she picked me up. She obliged and we had coffee, chocolate and about a thousand laughs. It was a great boost and had me re-fueled for the next day. I’m pretty sure I texted her after to ask when we were going out the next time. So, one year later, we’re still doing this. A few friends of ours all get together once every month-and-a-half or so and we just get together and breathe. and chat. and laugh. and eat food we don’t normally eat. and get that breathing room that we all need, but so rarely make time for.

I love my husband and kids, so much, but I think a little breathe-time is good for all of us. It allows me to stop, collect thoughts and re-fuel while my husband and kids get a break from me can bond together, too! I’ve learned that going out doesn’t make me a run-away mom, it just gives me an occasional time-out. Who would fight that?

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