For many families, school breaks mean family vacations. Yay vacation! I can’t wait for some rest and relaxation. Wait, what am I talking about? Nowadays, I vacation with my husband, two stepkids, and 19-month-old baby. Toodaloo rest and relaxation!
Regardless, I still love travelling and spending quality time with the family. However, over the years, I have noticed that I can get crabby from time to time on a vacation with the whole clan. I feel like a spoiled brat saying that but it is true. It is a lot of people and a lot of different energies mingling for many hours a day. Think about it, at home you may spend a handful of hours together per week and on vacation you are spending entire days together! It can be hard!
So to make sure I am the best stepmom/mom/wife I can be while we are away, I make sure to enforce these three rules:
Carve out time for yourself everyday
Spend quality time with your husband
Being yourself is always important but on vacation I feel like there is extra pressure to do things you don’t want to do or take on certain roles you aren’t used to. On vacation you are departing from your normal life but no need to depart from your authentic self. For example, if the family is going on a hike this afternoon but you HATE hikes, sit that one out. Because if you are anything like me, you will try to appease everyone and go and end up being cranky the entire time, which stinks for everyone. Of course you shouldn’t be a total a@#hole and skip everything that isn’t your favorite. All I’m saying is to be true to yourself and avoid falling victim to needless pressures. Like everything, it is a delicate balance.
Carving out time for yourself is also of the utmost importance. Even if it is just 20 minutes a day, you must take that quiet time where you can just unwind. Like I said, vacation is a time of a lot of people for a lot of time and it can get to you. So take a walk along the beach or go for a massage. Whatever it is, make it a priority because it is a little pointer that will go a long way.
Lastly, making a little time for just you and your husband during your stay is imperative. A lot of times, family vacations end up being all about the kids which is particularly hard when you have stepkids. So even if it just a happy hour or one romantic dinner during a week vacation, I urge you to do it. Reconnecting with your husband, even briefly, will remind you why you put up with everything you do! Remember, love conquers all so a quick reminder of you partners’ love does wonders!