I hide in my car to watch Netflix, snack — and run away from my kids

A mother hides in her car for 90 minutes a week — only to be alone and run away from her children.

Claire Haiek has three children — two boys, aged 11 and 13, and a girl aged 7.

The hard-working Australian mom admits online that once a week, she takes 90 minutes to herself to enjoy a light snack, eat sushi and watch light TV in peace.

“It really is heaven to just sit back and be,” a Sydney resident wrote on Kidspot.com.

She enrolled her daughter Olivia in 90-minute tap dance and ballet classes and realized she wouldn’t have enough time to go home and would just have to sit and wait.

“I thought it would hurt, but I was wrong!” Haiek said.

Claire Haiek is hiding in her car
Claire Haiek sits in her car and does whatever she wants every Thursday for 90 minutes.
Claire Haiek

Haiek initially likes the idea of ​​using time to exercise, but soon gives in to what he wants as a real parent: a scheduled weekly time slot for relaxing.

Sometimes he does exercise, such as when he walks to the grocery store for more snacks, a coffee shop for a sugary drink, or a sushi restaurant for fresh rolls.

“But most of the time, I’m just lying down, enjoying snacks that I don’t have to share with anyone and watching light and funny parties,” the mother-of-three shared. “Some weeks I sit on the phone with my mom or my best friend, others I just play word games on my phone.”

Mom's secret snack
Sometimes he would walk to a nearby shop to buy sushi rolls for his private dinner.
Claire Haiek
Mom hiding in the car watching Netflix
Most of the time, Haiek relaxes in his car watching Netflix and enjoying his snacks.
Claire Haiek

There are some very busy weeks when Haiek makes use of his free time to complete some work or errands, but most of the time he only needs 90 minutes to sit back and relax.

“I’m really starting to look forward to it,” he said.

“No crumbs on the floor begging to be sucked up, no piles of irons waiting to be ironed, no children to feed and bathe. And most importantly, without the temptation to do anything but just sit. It was exactly what I needed by the time 5pm arrived on a Thursday night.”

Daughter runs to the car after dance practice
He said hiding in his car had “nothing to do” with his family but forced him to take time out to relax every week.
Claire Haiek

After a few weeks of stopping in the same parking lot for the weekly happy hour Thursday for an hour and a half, Haiek realized he wasn’t the only parent taking advantage of that time. He sees a dad hanging out in his car, but he hasn’t cracked the code.

Haiek noted that he had another, older child in the car with him, “which may have been great for them, but it was an amateur move.” He admits he once took his son out on his 90 minutes of free time, but he literally “killed the vibe.”

“So yes, I hid in my car to be alone, but it had nothing to do with my husband and kids and everything to do with forcing myself to relax.”

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