Menorca: a weekend of self care
I’m just back from three magical days away from my family, the inbox, the to do list and everything else that makes up our day to day lives. A holiday booked many months ago before I had quit my day job and was plagued by concerns over how I would make money in the future! The days leading up to the trip I battled with emotions such as guilt (over leaving the boys and spending money) and anxiety over all the “what if’s”, and based on the comments I received on an Instagram post relating to my trip and the way I was feeling, I can safely assume that I am not alone in the way I felt, which is reassuring at the least.
And now here I am, writing this whilst sitting on the plane excited to get home and squeeze my boys ever so tightly, as well as fired up with ideas to explore and actions to be taken in the next few months. I feel energised, (slightly more) confident and relaxed. It was such a luxury to be able to come away for these few days and I am incredibly grateful to my husband who has taken the boys on some epic adventures whilst I’ve been away and would never ask me for anything in return for this time away (except perhaps some menorcan cheese and cured meats!). To have the freedom to travel through an airport relatively stress free, to wake up when my body wanted to, to sit and enjoy a meal, with adult conversation and to even stay up late without worrying about the next day. All these things you have to let go of to a certain extent when you have children and whilst I absolutely would never change it for the world, it is grounding and refreshing to take time away from life as a mother once in a while. To rediscover parts that have been buried under the needs of your off spring.
In oder to not forget these past few days, I’m putting pen to paper and writing this blog post, publishing the photos and capturing my memories so I can revisit any time I need to escape! Together with my sister, dad and his girlfriend we visited restaurants and places I have not been to before, those that I know wouldn’t be suitable for a meal or an adventure with two small boys. We made the most of the super efficient and pretty reasonable bus service and went exploring the south of the island. Despite coming to Menorca every year of my life, there is still so much we haven’t seen and with no meal times, loo breaks, tired little legs to consider we set off in search of delicious sea food, views to die for and long white sand beaches.
Hopping on the bus from Mahon to Santo Tomas we arrived just before one, to bag a table at a highly recommended beach side restaurant called Es Bruc. With generous portions of the freshest sea food, tables perched on the edge of the sea with views across the sparkling med and a calm, relaxed atmosphere, it more than lived up to its reputation. We indulged in sardines fried in garlic and parsley accompanied by a bottle of house white (at a mere 10euros a bottle!).
A few hours later as the sun was still high in the sky, we set off east following the Cami De Cavalls which is a walking path that circumnavigates the entire of the island and has only reopened in the recent years. Skirting the high cliff edges, meandering through the fresh green growth of the shrubs, we paused frequently to take in the breathtaking views. Dipping our toes in the sea at Santo Tomas beach, watching our footprints being swallowed up by the ebb and flow of the sea, before dropping down to the southern end of Son Bou beach.
A sprawling white sand beach, backed with banks of sand dunes, being dutifully protected by the Menorcian authorities. Crashing waves, banks of drift woods and piles of seaweed gathering on the sea edge, the turquoise waters as crystal clear as you will ever get. Following the sea edge, bar a few naturalists, the beach was all ours to enjoy. Stopping for a quick dip in the sea, which was bracing but oh so refreshing, we then made our way to one of the beach bars to watch the sun as it slowly set behind a bank of clouds that hovered over Mallorca far in the distance. I have this thing for sunsets (and sun rises) and whenever we holiday or visit new places, I always try to take at least one in. With the sun setting that bit earlier at this time of year, I am so happy I got to see the closing of the day this trip!
With dusk turning to night, we made our way back to the bus station and were home within forty minutes. Our hearts and bellies full, we all agreed that the day couldn’t have been any better and have already started making plans for next year. The first of what will now be a yearly escape for me and my sister and a tradition to look forward to.
Self care is so important, I have heard so many times how it is not enough to take care of everyone else if you don’t take care of yourself. How can you be a support to your family if you yourself are worn out and unhappy? Wise words that I shall keep in my mind for ever more.