Every summer for the last few years my best girl cousins and I have taken a long weekend trip to Las Vegas. None of the three of us are particularly into gambling, partying, muscled men in fireman strip outfits or bright lights much past 10 pm. But there’s something that has become so MAGICAL about Las Vegas for the three of us. In fact, last summer when we couldn’t go (cause one of us had to go ahead and have a baby, ugh; j/k he’s perfect) it was like some little wind was blown out of our sails.
We look forward to it all year (groups texts and emails like “VEGAS: 243 days to go” make living through yet another school-morning routine almost worth it). That summer was also the summer my marriage ended, I re-entered the world of dating and starting getting acquainted with the term “single mom.” It was a rocky one—and the fact that Vegas didn’t happen? The worst.
But never fear dear reader, we are GOING BACK this summer and have all the plans laid to do all of the NOTHING our little hearts desire. Except get spray tans. And drink. No judgies. Cause Vegas. Now, instead of being jelly and sitting around your neighborhood pool hearing “Mom look at THIS!” for the 5678th time, I challenge you to grab a gaggle of your best girls and get the FREAK outta dodge. And follow these tips, cause you’re gonna need them.
Wear something that makes you feel single. Oh yes, you heard me. Girl, you know when you put something on and you feel just a little dangerous and a lot fabulous? Ok, or at least do you remember once upon a time, through the fog of littles and yoga pants, how that felt? You are a head turner and I do NOT want to hear anything about mom body, not at your ideal size, etc. You go get something that makes you feel HOT and put that baby on with some heels. And lips. Do it. Cause I said so.
Stay at a hotel that has an adults-only pool. This is not a drill. There are actual, non-mythical places that have swimming pools where ONLY adults are allowed to go. I know, I didn’t believe it at first either. There are no handstands to watch, no toddlers to chase, and typically there’s some form of swim-up bar or person who will bring you a beverage to drink while relaxing IN said pool. Breathe, sister. I know. It’s almost too much.
Splurge on one thing you love. The first year we went to Vegas I found this pair of pricey sunglasses that were made for my face, but they were not something I would typically spend money on. I looked at them. We went back to see them. I tried them on 37 times. I didn’t buy them. And then I went home and called and ordered them (clearly). And now, years later, every time I put them on, I am reminded of our time there; transported for one sweet moment to our lounge chairs and pink drinks. It sounds cheesy, but friends, you do what you have to do when your daily routine includes discussions on who’s pooped and where. I don’t have to tell you this.
Lie in hotel beds drinking coffee and watching terrible TV. There is no better thing on the PLANET than cranking the air conditioning, getting under the covers in a comfy hotel bed that you are in no way responsible for making, ordering a giant pot of coffee that you did not have to brew, and watching ridiculous television with your squad so you can discuss live vs. via FaceBook messages. Trust me on this. I am a big proponent of self-care and this is like WAY at the top of my list. The ability to do nothing and feel no guilt is a rare skill and I urge you to get to practicing, STAT.
Check in at home, but only enough so you know they’re alive. Your people are fine. Whether it’s your partner, their grandparents, a friend, a sitter, or just a really nice stranger who you bribed (kidding, come ON, I know), I can very much assure you that they have fed, clothed and somehow entertained your small humans. And really, that is actually all they need for three days. You probably left a list of numbers, likes/dislikes, routines, suggested outings and packaged meals ready to go that will entirely be ignored… but guess what? THEY ARE FINE. Call or FaceTime them no more than once a day to say “hi” but make it short and sweet. You’ve got stuff to do (see pool reference above) and they are also on a vacation of sorts; let them get back to the party that is a weekend with grandparents.
Convinced? Get your sweet self moving and I’ll save you a lounge chair by the pool.
Author: Kate Buckholz Berrio
Kate Buckholz Berrio is a single mom to two boys, and a truth teller at all costs. She works full time; speaks, writes, and performs in local theater; and generally lives a life of carefully managed chaos. She is a contributor on DivorcedMoms.com and has been featured on HuffPo, Scary Mommy, Mock Moms and Charleston Moms Blog. She and her boys live in beautiful Charleston, South Carolina. You can find her on her blog, I Hold Your Heart.