When I had my first child in 2006, I quickly learned that kids can be the best excuse to get out of things.
You don’t want to go to Aunt Bunny’s house for supper on Sunday? No problem, you’ve got a colicky baby. You can’t bear going to another boring baby shower? No need to fear, the baby is taking her Ferber-approved afternoon nap at that time.
Trust me, I used these – and many more – excuses when I got into the rigors of new motherhood. Just managing the house, getting dinner on the table, and keeping the marriage strong seemed all consuming. Who had time for socializing or leaving the house with non-puked-on garments?
But now that my kids are older (3, 5 & 8), I’ve realized that my children are my excuse for making excuses. Oops, do I really want to role-model this kind of behavior?
So it’s time to stop making excuses, and step away from the ponytail and yoga pants. It’s time to accept the invitations coming my way and embrace humanity in hopes of having some adult conversation and some fun — not just the repeated pat-a-cake sing-alongs and living room dance parties.
Let’s join together and redefine the top 10 mom excuses:
1. I’d love to go, but…
Instead of making up a quick excuse, why not say, “This sounds like fun and I’d love to go — I’ll get back to you by tomorrow.”
2. I don’t have childcare.
Instead of blaming the babysitter (who you likely didn’t ask in the first place), get on the phone, send out some texts, splash it all over Facebook, and book that ‘sitter!
3. I have nothing to wear & my hair is a mess.
Instead of blowing off the latest event, embrace the moment and get some grooming! Shave your legs, blow out your hair, and go shopping for a new outfit.
4. I just don’t have the energy.
Instead of missing out on a fun girls’ night out due to overall exhaustion, plan for it! Get a good night’s sleep the night before, and prepare for a low-stress day before you paint the town red with your gals.
5. I will have to talk to people.
Instead of letting your social anxiety take over, step out of the house and interact with the people! You never know, you just might meet that perfect caffeine/wine-drinkin’ pal you’ve been hoping for.
In closing, I encourage all you busy moms to embrace life. While having children is one of the greatest joys, it can also be all consuming and isolating. It’s time to start saying ‘yes’ to the invitations, and enjoy some fun outside of the kids.