One Weekend For Myself Every Quarter

by Alexandra Carmichael

My finger is poised to click the “Book Flight” button. I can’t click it. This is crazy – flying to Portland for the weekend, by myself, to learn how to wield a saber?

There’s a tai chi workshop to learn the saber set, which I haven’t yet learned, January 24-25, in sabrePortland. I was just up there last October for my first weekend workshop away from Daniel and the girls. To be honest, it was complete bliss. So why am I not jumping at the chance to go again?

“Irresponsible!” “Selfish!” “Indulgent!” are the voices that yell at me in my head. I fight back. I think of all the women before me who never modeled to me how to care for themselves. I think of the massive depression that resulted from this self-neglect. I think of my daughters. If it were one of them, wanting to go to this workshop, what would I say? A whole-hearted, “Go! And have a great time!!”

I realize I need to learn this lesson. For myself and as an example for my two girls. When they feel the inevitable pressure put on women to sacrifice everything for others, they will fight back. They will take care of themselves, and so must I.

So this is my first challenge on this balance quest. One Weekend For Myself Every Quarter. Two days and one night away, doing something fabulous for myself. Which, knowing me, will involve crazy new levels and depths of my tai chi practice.

Every parent needs this. Quite possibly every person needs this. 8 days a year, all to yourself. It’s the greatest gift you can give your child and everyone around you. It’s the greatest gift you can give yourself. Join me in this challenge and let me know by posting a comment!

I’m excited. I click. The order went through! I’m in seat 14B. I’ll be stocked with sheets and sheets of paper to write. On my last weekend away I wrote 20 dense pages of self-therapy between the 6-8 hours a day of tai chi. I came back refreshed, restored, and loving my family and myself again. And this time, I’ll come back knowing how to wield a saber too.