As a parent about to go away on a trip, I was looking forward to a temporary, new routine where my sole focus was on myself. It was fun, but I was amazed how much I missed the old routine. If you are a parent of a toddler, you know this routine.
The routine in a nutshell is this - you do what you have to do every morning and night while making the care of your toddler the number one priority. Thanks to the training given to me by my toddler, I can wake early, run a few miles on the treadmill, shower, and be almost ready to go before he desires my company. Some mornings he lies awake listening to me go through these steps to cry out just as I turn off the shower, Other mornings, he wakes as I am sprinting that last few hundred yards to my imagined finished line. That means that getting ready involves going into his room every few minutes begging for more time or releasing him to become an audience member to the remaining routine.
Dear parents of toddlers, let me confess something to you right now. It's worth whatever you need to spend or beg for to have at least 24-48 hours free of this routine. Imagine waking up, not when you are trying to be free of your toddler, but based on your own needs, Imagine getting into the shower and taking your time without audience commentary. Dare I say, imagine leaving your room and getting to your destination on-time without having to chase a toddler in heels in your front yard. It's heavenly. This is the life of non-parents. It's worth experiencing this life at least once a year.
BUT, there is a warning. The toddler routine is so ingrained in you that it's hard for your brain and body to remember. For example, the first night away, every sound that I heard woke me up since I thought it was my son. If found myself looking for the baby monitor to go to the gym in the morning. I deliberately left extra early since I have been trained to give myself extra time in case "something toddler" happens.
And yeah, one more thing, taking a break from the routine actually makes you miss it and love it upon your return. So see, it's worth it.