I came across one of my old Facebook posts from a year ago. It was about my birthday and how my husband got me a hotel room for the night. He knew he wasn’t invited, this was gonna be a one-woman partaaay.
I had two babies who were 18 months apart. I was exhausted from them, I was exhausted from working at the nursing home and I needed to rest and most importantly, I needed some silence.
So, for my birthday, I asked… For me to be on my own. And I got it. Adam booked me a room at the Hyatt Regency. My mother in law asked, “Don’t you want Adam to join you? You’d enjoy it more if he was there, I can babysit the babies for you.” I answered, “How would this idea be relaxing for me? I want a room to myself so I don’t have to talk to anyone, touch anyone, be touched by anyone or to be woken up by snoring.”
We compromised a little on the day. Adam and the babies came to the room and hung out for a little while. We all had McDonalds for dinner and then they had a little bath. It was raining heavily and I could hear the raindrops hitting the window pane. How relaxing! Then the babies started crying. No, stop crying, this is meant to be relaxing for me. So I said to Adam, “Right, you three need to leave for me to really enjoy this birthday present of mine.” I walked them all back to the car, gave them kisses and sprinted back to the elevator.
First thing I did when I walked back into the room was fill the bath with very warm water and some bath bubbles. I took my clothes off and laid in there and listened to the running water from the tap. Aaaaah. Wait. I can hear the loud TV. That’s not relaxing. So I grabbed a towel, got out and turned the TV off. See, if Adam was here, he’d want to watch TV and he probably wouldn’t let me turn it off. Back in the hot bath. Aaaaaaaaah. Silence. I never realized silence could sound so beautiful.
I then laid in bed with nothing but my bathrobe on. I was all set, I had a new book and a family size block of chocolate in bed with me. I found the room service menu, picked up the phone and ordered tomorrow’s breakfast for 7.30am.
I turned the TV back on and flicked through the channels. As I’m mindlessly watching TV with no interruptions, I sent a text to Adam to say goodnight and that I loved him. I’m pretty sure I didn’t even ask if the babies were alright! I started on my block of chocolate, with nobody asking me for a piece or more. This whole block of chocolate was MINE! All miiiiiiine!!
Wait, what? It’s 3am, and the TV is still on. Did I fall asleep? What time did I fall asleep?? I looked around me and I saw that I didn’t touch my new book and I had eaten 3/4 of the family size block of chocolate. Dare I do this? I broke off another piece of chocolate, ate it, and fell straight back to sleep again.
I woke up at 7am. I walked over to the window, pulled the curtains apart and looked out at the grey skies. So it didn’t turn out to be this “one-woman partaaaay” I had envisioned (I’m not even sure what I expected). Did I enjoy this hotel room? Was it worth the money? Did it live up to the expectations of having time on my own? Yes, yes and a resounding yes. I hopped back into bed to watch the morning news. Nobody’s asking me for a bottle of milk or breakfast. No one is crying or whining about something. Apart from Karl’s voice on The Today Show, the room was silent.
The door bell rings and the hotel waiter has my breakfast.
“Gooooooood morning! Where would you like your breakfast Ma’am?”
I stood by the door and stared at him for a few seconds. I fantasized dancing around the room (like Sister Maria in the Sound of Music) and bursting into song, “Aaaaaaaanywhere! Surpriiiiise me!”
And again the waiter asked, “Ma’am? Your breakfast? Where would you like it?”
I quickly blinked my eyes back to reality, “Oh sorry, um, on the bed please, thank you.”
A full cooked breakfast in bed. Sausages, mushrooms, eggs, grilled tomato, bacon and 3 thick cut slices of white bread with a slab of cold pure butter on a little dish. They even put an assortment of little jars of jams!! I didn’t have to cook it and yet it’s sitting on my bed. Just for me. I start digging in. It’s just me, Karl and Lisa from The Today Show. That was the single most relaxing night/morning I’ve ever had. That was a year ago. Would I ask for the same experience again for my next birthday? Probably not. Not while this experience is still so fresh in my mind. Maybe again when I’ve forgotten what it’s like? Whenever I tell this story to my friends, I’d always say I’ll never forget how beautiful the sound of silence, sounded.
I highly recommend this to all mums out there who feel burnt out, tired and exhausted from the demands of everyday life. Yeah yeah yeah, you still love your husband and your kids. But you just want some time on your own to recharge. And sleep on a King size bed, with clean and fresh, ironed sheets. That’s what I had and I’ll never forget it. Or when I do eventually forget, then maybe it’s time to do it again. (I might even allow Adam to join me this time, wink wink.)
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