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Calgon, Take Me Away! The Top 8 Unusual Parent Getaways

The dentist moved my head to the side, forced open my mouth and moved a buzzing drill toward my teeth when all of a sudden I thought: This is great!

What has become of me?

I used to hate the dentist, probably like everyone else in the world. But I remember a time a few years ago when my daughter was going through a crazy spell, my wife was working extra long hours at the office and I was trying to take care of the kid and the home and finish a few big projects that kept me up at all hours. When I remembered I had a dentist appointment, my first thought was anything but … great!

But then ….

There I was … reclining on a comfy chair, reading a magazine with no one asking for more milk or play time. There was music, a little casual banter. At one point, while the assistant went to ready a tool tray, I caught myself nearly nodding off. By the time the dentist arrived and starting excavating my teeth, I thought it was a small price to pay for a little peace and quiet.

Are all parents so hard up for a break?

These little breaks don’t happen all the time, and thankfully they aren’t even needed all the time, but there have definitely been moments in my years at home with my daughter when I’ve caught myself doing some mundane task without her — grocery shopping, going to the doctor, etc. — and thought: I could use more of these little breaks.

So here they are: My Top 8 Most Unusual Parental Getaways.

I’d love to hear about your brief moments of bliss.

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  • Dentist 1 of 8
    Dentist
    Who knew novacaine could be so relaxing?
  • Grocery Store 2 of 8
    Grocery Store
    Wandering the aisles in slow, absent-minded bliss with no one asking for this or that or one more sample? Ahhhhh....
  • Target/Mall 3 of 8
    Target/Mall
    Not to get too specific with stores, and you could probably put any random mall here, but there's something about having to only maneuver yourself through crowds that is almost liberating.
  • PTA Meeting 4 of 8
    PTA Meeting
    Good god, what have I become? At our last meeting, someone brought delicious cheese and crackers and little dessert trays. Leave it to the at-home parent to keep raising mundane topics so everyone has to stick around to chat ....
  • Swim Class 5 of 8
    Swim Class
    I LOVE swim class. Yes, I'm technically with the kid. But for that half hour, she's in the pool and I'm on the pool deck, happily reading a book.
  • Emergency Room 6 of 8
    Emergency Room
    This is sort of like the dentist's office, but with better drugs. Yes please!
  • Nighttime Crying Sleep 7 of 8
    Nighttime Crying Sleep
    Say what? I don't feel so guilty about this one, as my wife and I both used to get up to cuddle the baby when she was an infant and still split the duties today. But how sweet is that sleep after you hear the child cry and then hear your partner go deal with it? Maybe that's just me, but that sleep always feels the coziest.
  • The Computer 8 of 8
    The Computer
    I used to work on these stupid things all the time when I was stuck in an office, so why does it suddenly feel so good when I can slip behind a screen for a little alone time? Give me a cup of coffee to go with mindless browsing, and it's like the batteries recharge.

Follow Mike at his blog, Cry It Out!, or on the face pages.

Previously

7 Unexpected Ways to Use Duct Tape

Main photo:Wondersinthedark

Slideshow photos: Morguefile

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