I Go to Dinner Alone...And You Should Too

Let me paint a picture for you.  Maybe this will sound somewhat familiar...

It's late in the day.  Your three old year is whining for a snack, but you're arms deep in cooking dinner.  The kitchen is hot because the west sun is blazing in through the windows and the oven's set at 400 degrees.

You are exhausted and tired of making decisions for [what seems like] the entire world.  Your kiddo is now clinging to your leg despite the fact that your wielding a knife and you are feeling the need to run away.  

Like now, really fast into an open field where you can finally breathe.

Maybe I don't need to write anything else in this post because that one paragraph just explained the whole title.  Ha!

Even if you are not the caretaker of a toddler, I think we can all relate to feeling exhausted, spent and empty at the end of the day.  I have literally locked myself in our bedroom after Drew came home in an attempt to claim some space.  

But the best solution?  That's right, you guessed it [you are so darn smart] - get the hell outta dodge and take yourself on a date!

This may sound like a crazy idea to some and a totally normal idea to others.  I am a total and complete extrovert, but even us extroverts need our time to unwind and recoup.  Before I became a stay-at-home-mama/blogger, I hated my commute to and from work.  Now however; I see what that commute did for my head.  It allowed me to separate from work both physically and mentally; to close down that part of my brain.  Nowadays, there is no separation from work.  Life seems to be all mushed together like a nasty purplish brown ball of mixed play dough [12 containers play dough here and they're all the same damn color].  

So, to give myself a little unwind time, a few times a month I take myself to dinner...A L O N E.  It's glorious.  Sometimes I work a little, sometimes I take a book.  Sometimes I just people watch.  Either way, I always come home rejuvenated.  

Not convinced?  

my top 10 reasons why going to dinner alone is so amazing

1.  No sharing - You think I'm kidding on this, but I am not.  Sometimes you just don't want to share.  And it doesn't matter what I feed Vivi, if my food looks even remotely different, she wants "just a wittle bite".  Yea right.  From a shovel. [Ya feel me, Gaffigan fans?]

2.  You feel like an adult - Wow, it's nice to be reminded that there's more to the world than park sandpits, Doc McStuffins, the word "NO!!" and cheddar bunnies.

3.  You can breathe freely - Have you ever paid attention to your breathing when you have a screaming child in your face?  It's not good.  Every yogi master in the world is cringing.

4.  You can actually TASTE your food - I believe that becoming a mom inherently teaches you to scarf your food in 1 minute flat.  You never know when you'll need to jump up for the next meltdown.  Plus, reread #1.  Eating alone = chewing your food.

5.  You can daydream - Like really daydream...like when your were a kid.  No to-do lists running through my head here.  Just sweet beautiful images of a stiff frozen cocktail at an adult-exclusive resort in Belize.

6.  Someone is waiting on YOU! - Ok, I'm just going to say that again.  SOMEONE IS WAITING ON YOU.

7.  You are eating food you didn't have to cook - A no brainer.

8.  You have personal space - Put me in a crowded tiny cafe in Oakland's Rockridge district at a little 1 person bistro table and I guarantee you I will still have more space than I do at home.

9.  You can visit a non-kid friendly restaurant - I tend to follow the philosophy that generally speaking, there are few restaurants that you can't bring a child to [the East Bay is so great about this].  You may not want to bring said child, but you could if you needed to.  However, if there's a place where you'll be stressing about getting the evil eye instead of enjoying your pinot, then now's the time to get over there.

10.  Do you really need any more reasons?  Nah, I think you got the idea.  Now get your keys and hit the town for solo happy hour!  I'll wave to you from my little bistro table, party of one, while I savor my wine.

All ideas in this post are of my own opinions including mention of companies and/or affiliate sites.  No sponsorships were involved in the creation of this post.  Photograph taken by Olha Klein.  Edits and graphics created by Meredith Wheeler in Photoshop CC.