Taking a Much Needed Break

Just a stock photo...

I have been so incredibly burnt out lately. I am feeling constantly exhausted with no mental or emotional energy to do what I need to do. I have so much on my plate and yet the thought of doing any of it seems impossible; I can barely muster up the strength to do the bare minimum to survive. It's really, really rough.

I was talking about this with my therapist, about this emotional hole I'm in, in part caused by some really intense things the past 4 months in which I have not gotten a single moment of a break, and in general since corona started when I haven't had any real breaks. (I did go away for a weekend with a friend and I did go camping with my kids, but those were not enough time/not alone which is what I needed, and even those were longer than a year ago.) I was trying to figure out how to survive this situation and move forward when she came up with a brilliant solution. 

"You should go on a vacation," she tells me. I've been seeing her long enough that she knows how much my trips abroad have been a balm to my soul and give me strength and emotional fortitude and bring joy into my life, basically what my mental health absolutely needed during low points. Single motherhood is hard, single motherhood when dealing with mental health issues even harder, and single motherhood dealing with physical disabilities on top of the mental health struggles is harder yet. And I haven't even shared all the struggles which I can't share publicly which have made this even more challenging.

And yet. Corona. And money. Because of corona, on top of the costs of the flights and lodging (which I generally can find quite cheaply), I have to pay for corona tests before and after flying, in both directions. This adds a significant cost to a trip. And that isn't even factoring in the travel health insurance that is likely to be much more expensive because of corona. Didn't really seem doable.

And then I thought about traveling within my country. Because, honestly, what I need is less travel and "adventure". What I need is really just a break. And I don't need to go to another country to do that. I just need a nice place to stay, away from my kids, away from responsibilities, a place to relax and lounge around and literally do nothing other than read, sleep, watch movies, and take long hot baths.

However, I don't currently have anything in my vacation fund. I've spent a lot of money on all the evaluations I've been doing lately, hemorrhaging money. I'd just started to build up my emergency fund again after I'd used it all up. 


This honestly is an emergency. A mental health emergency. I've been so close to the breaking point of not being able to function. This is what an emergency fund is for. Actual emergencies. And this is definitely one. Mental health is no less important than a dryer that needs replacing because it broke.

So I decided to look on Airbnb for the cheapest place that is actually decent. Fortunately, right now it is low season for traveling where I live so things are cheaper than usual. Going away to a dinky ugly small not nice shared place right now wouldn't be helpful at all so it would just be a waste of money. I need something that looks pretty, comfortable, and is quiet, but other than that not picky as long as it is doable by bus from my hometown. I decided to see if there were any places that fit those criteria for under $100 a night. I also decided that this vacation would be a lot better if it was a place that had a large enough bath or a jacuzzi for me to fit my large body into.

I told some of my friends about what I had planned and asked if they had any recommended places in addition to a few that I was looking at, and an amazing friend told me that I deserve a real break and not need to worry about the money, that I should definitely look for a place with a jacuzzi, and that she would sponsor my trip for me she says I should look for something up to $150 a night.

I'd already decided I was going away from Friday until Tuesday (my kids switch off weekends with me and their dad, and they go to him Sunday through Tuesday, and he agreed to switch weekends with me so I can go this week) so that is 4 nights, and this amazing person sent me $600 so I can get a nice place. This also means that I don't have to touch my emergency fund, saving that for another emergency.

I found a beautiful Airbnb in a resort city a few hours' bus ride from my house. With a jacuzzi. At $85 a night. With an additional $110 in service fees and cleaning fees. Which came to a total of $449. And my generous sponsor told me I should feel free to spend the rest of the money she sent on takeout, so I don't need to cook and can completely relax.

I booked it, and I'm really excited about it.

And I really wished that was the end of this post.

But yesterday my daughter came down and got diagnosed with Covid. My other kids and I are all negative, so far, but I really, really, really am hoping, praying, sending out wishes to the universe that I don't get sick and will stay well enough to be able to go on this trip and get the refreshing that I absolutely need to get done. (It doesn't help that yesterday was already too late to cancel and get a full refund; I'd only get 1/3 of the money back if I canceled then, so I'm just playing it by ear and seeing what happens and only cancel on Thursday if I get sick- I'd get back the same amount as a refund until then.)

Warm wishes? Pray for me? Send good vibes/juju my way? Because I absolutely, absolutely need this break and if I don't get it, I'll be so incredibly crushed.

P.S. When I do, hopefully, go, I probably will continue blogging, just slower and chilled, with no pressure on myself.

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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  1. Praying you can go and get that much needed refreshment. It is sooo important for us to really watch our emotional state along with our physical state.

  2. Really hope you stay well and that your daughter gets well soon. Sending warmest wishes.

  3. Absolutely, prayers and good vibes and every other positive thing you need. Stay well.

  4. You must be a good friend to have such warm and caring friends

  5. Bless your heart. I am glad that at least you recognize it. Many years ago, I did not, and then went through 11 years of on and off nervous breakdowns. It was bad. I learned what I cannot stand. The first is feeling overwhelmed. If I do, I look at my calendar, get on the phone and cancel everything. If people are disappointed, that's too bad. The other thing is that I can't stand feeling "jerked around." If I do, I just quit my involvement in whatever is making me feel that way. I learned the very hard way that I have to put my health first, both physical and mental, or else I have nothing left to give to others. God bless you. Be wise and careful!

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