Last month, a dear friend invited me to lunch. I let her know my calendar that afternoon was completely free, and the babe was with a friend, "Tell me where to be and when," I replied.
"If you have time, we could take a midday yoga class," she offered. "Or see a movie..."
"A movie?! In the middle of a Wednesday afternoon?!." The prospect seemed utterly indulgent, but incredibly enticing. Giddy with excitement, I agreed. "Let's do it!" And we did. Our outing was a wonderful break in an otherwise mundane week, and we committed to do it again the following month.
Emboldened by our outing, I determined to find time to see another by myself in the weeks to come. I chose the movie and the theater and put a date on my calendar, but when the moment came, I was full of excuses: I had too much work to do and too many errands to run, and the appointed day came and went with no movie.
As the day of our second movie date approached, my calendar was still free, but my plate was full. The babe, her father, and I were leaving town early the following morning, and I hadn't even begun thinking about packing. I was behind on a few projects and knew very little work would be accomplished while we were away. It seemed irresponsible to take a break in the middle of a busy day, and I considered asking my friend for a rain check. But when she reached out to confirm, I found myself saying yes. I don't want to let her down, I justified to myself...
As expected, we again had a lovely afternoon, and as we stepped back into the sunlight, I knew I had made the right decision. Not only did I enjoy time spent with a dear friend, I had plenty of time to finish my work, pack our suitcases, and prepare for travel.
Sometimes it takes another person to remind us of the value of enjoying the present moment. Are you overdue for some self-care but struggling to give yourself permission? Find - or be - a partner in crime, and make it happen.