“Momcations” are on the rise.
A “momcation” is just what it sounds like: a vacation taken by a mother without her children or husband (you go, girl!). The trend, while rising in popularity, is controversial, raising the question of whether or not it’s selfish for a mother to leave her family for a some “me” time.
Dr. Nava Silton, an Associate Professor of Psychology at Marymount Manhattan College, told New York Fox 5 that momcations are a good thing.
"Motherhood can be very stressful—whether it's financial stresses, time stresses, just trying to get a whole lot done in a very short period of time," she said. "I think it's really important for mothers to be rejuvenated and refreshed."
And the moms taking their well-deserved vacations agree.
Louisiana mom Katherine Gauthier took a trip alone to Disney World in the summer of 2017.
“I enjoyed entertaining no one but myself,” she told Fairygodboss. “I visited restaurants that had a dress code. I ate grown-up food … I drank wine and had real conversations with other adults. And I slept whenever I wanted. Sounds simple, but this was a big deal,” she continued.
Another mom fond of her much-needed alone time is Amy Yarger from Columbus, Ohio. Yarger has taken several momcations, which started as simply extending a few work trips for personal time. She then visited a friend in North Carolina alone and, most recently, took a trip alone to Guatemala in 2018. She says the trip impacted her “on such a profound level.”
“Simply put, it changed me,” she told Fairygodboss. “Sure, I figured I would journal and get some downtime, but not work on stagnant emotions, stuck energy, and pent-up anger.”
“As a mom, you deal with these emotions — good, ugly, super ugly,” she continued. “I released so much and left so much emotional baggage there. I don’t ever recall feeling that light. I don’t ever recall being so in tune with my intuition or that gut feeling that you use as a guide.”
It’s understandable that moms are starting to plan these solo trips. In 2017, a Welch’s study revealed that working moms spend an average of 98 hours a week working -- either for their company or as a mom.
Marisa Megan, a 29-year-old mom of one living in Portugal, is currently planning her first ever momcation with her best friend, a mom of three.
Megan stressed the importance of each mom taking the time she needs to “just be a person.”
She and her friend will be visiting Barcelona and Egypt for a nine-day trip, where they will be partaking in adult activities like scuba diving and kitesurfing. But Megan said she is most looking forward to simply “not following a schedule, doing what I feel like when I feel like.”
While momcations are being hailed as necessary stress relievers in the ever-so-busy lifestyle that is having children, Gauthier claims she does not like the term, calling it, “but a dream for many and a misnomer for most.”
“There is no escaping being a mom … only brief flashes of solitude and a change of scenery to help induce a momentary lapse of guilt in which to remember who and why we are,” she said.