If you have read my post Limbo you know that I struggle with taking time out for myself. The second problem I have is that when I do take time for myself I generally do not enjoy it to the max because I feel guilty about not being present for my family.
This is something I have been actively working on over the last month and a half. I have been taking 5-10 minutes here and there to have a cup of coffee on the porch, read or work on pictures uninterrupted. By doing short spurts while still at home it has been alleviating some of my anxiety related to feeling selfish and allowing me to show Taylor that it is okay for me to not always be immediately available (mostly with me not feeling like a bad parent). Now my next step is doing this out of the house.
On September 28th, I was on my way home from a Neurology appointment and Nick called to let me know he was taking Tay on a daddy daughter date night to one of her new favorite restaurants – Pizza Ranch. I was stuck in traffic downtown and thinking about my To Do list. As turned on to East Wash I had a crazy thought about grabbing a cup of coffee on Willy Street before I went home. I was craving Ground Zero Coffee. So made a spur of the moment decision and changed my route. As I pulled up to Ground Zero I was met with disappointment when I saw that they closed at 6pm and it was 5:45. This would leave me only time to grab coffee to go or to chug it down. Not what I was looking for.
That is when I decided to continue on with my decision to not head straight home but to do something for me. So I drove down Willy Street in the direction of home trying to decide where my destination should be. As I passed a building labeled Batch with a large mixing bowl out front I became curious. So when the traffic allowed I pulled over and whipped out my handy-dandy phone and Googled Batch. It turned out to be a bakery – which also closing at 6pm. This was okay with me though because I am all for sweets, even if they are grab and go.
I went into Batch Bakehouse and picked out a Lemon Blackberry Baby, a Lemon Blueberry Muffin and three Shorties (shortbread and buttercream cookie sandwiches) in a variety of flavors. ~ The desserts were DELICIOUS! I meant to have the Lemon Blackberry Baby and Muffin on separate mornings for breakfast, but once I had a bite there was no holding back. The adorable Shorties were also quite yummy. These I shared with Nick and Taylor when I got home. ~
After picking out my goodies I decided to walk down a block and try out a restaurant that I have driven by on many occasions, Grampa’s Pizzeria. I rarely treat myself to meals out at restaurants, usually it is something quick, fast and easy because I am on the go. However on this particular night I was feeling like I should take the time to eat alone and enjoy being just me.
So in I walked up the ramp on the side of the building and entered. It turned out to be nicer and more upscale than I anticipated. I was quite out-of-place in my yoga pants, hoodie and unwashed ponytail. However, I felt like I had made the commitment by walking though the door. Thankfully it was not too busy yet; that made me feel better. I asked to be seated at the bar because that felt like it would be less awkward while eating alone. The decor was vintage and classy which went well with the lighting and music playing in the background.
I ordered a glass of wine and the BRASSACRE pizza – brussels, bacon, fresh mozzarella, olive oil, garlic, grana and added mushrooms. Then I placed my phone in my bag and spent the next half hour with my wine, thoughts, music and food. I did take my phone out once to take a quick, blurry photo of the pizza before I ate it all. However, I did put it right back afterwards not even looking at the quality of the photo I took.
Sitting there alone not being engaged with anyone or anything felt odd and uncomfortable at first. Especially since I am always on the go and multi-tasking. I rarely do one thing and am fully present at that moment. As dinner went on I became more comfortable and unaware of my lack of companionship. By the end of my dinner I felt relax, rejuvenated and really full.
Once I paid and was walking to my car I was overcome with emotion. I was so PROUD of myself. I had done it. I had enjoyed ‘me’ time without thinking about what I should be doing, where I should be and whom I was not with. I was completely enthused with the notion of treating myself and disconnecting. On my way home I called my Momma to let her know what I had done. Yes, that is just it, I felt like a kid who was proud of some great accomplishment and couldn’t wait to share the news.
Now that have successfully accomplished solitary dining and I felt great about it afterwards; I will continue to work towards this goal – for a healthier happier me. I know it will take practice and baby steps. This will be well worth the peace of mind that I gain by taking time out for me and enjoying it, anxiety free (or at least reduced).
What are some things you do when you take time for yourself? Let me know by commenting below!
Thank you for taking the time to read about my night alone!