I have been attempting to write this for a while now, it turns out this whole Mommy, Wife, Work balance is quite difficult at times, which is why I started blogging in the first place…lol! But, on to the actual topic of conversation…your first trip away from baby. The reason for the “OH NAY” is, if you have not already had this experience, the first trip away from baby is a welcomed break, but it is TERRIFYING! And might I say…very GUILT PROVOKING! At least that was my experience.
Recently, I went on a quick trip (3 nights) with my husband to Nashville. When we agreed
to the trip we originally planned to take out little guy with us, but by the time we were purchasing our airline tickets we decided that while it would be difficult on us to leave Deacon, it would probably be a little less stressful on him if he did not go. Very tough decision, and honestly, looking back, because he is so good at going with the flow (because we take him EVERYWHERE) we may have actually decided differently. Regardless, we decided not to take him this time away, and it was our first experience being away from our little guy!
With that said, I decided to provide a few little survival tips for your first trip away from baby.
- Be comfortable with you caregiver choice! This is number 1 for a reason. This is really the most important. If you are not 100% comfortable with your options for who will be watching the baby while you are away, then take the baby with you, or don’t go! I know that sounds drastic, but really I don’t see it any other way. I am fortunate that my mother was available to watch him. She also watches him 3 times a week, so he is very comfortable with her and she is very aware of the ways in which I do things. While no one can be you, making sure that YOU are comfortable with your choice is ESSENTIAL.
- PREPARE, PREPARE, PREPARE! If you have read any of my other posts, I am sure you are not surprised by this. I provided “how-to” information for bottle preparation, feedings, bed time routines, and also what to do if our little guy was not feeling the greatest. I also provided a notarized letter (along with his insurance card) that gave my mother and father permission to seek medical treatment if necessary in our absence. We made sure she had every POSSIBLE thing she might need and also left her monetary options in case something came up. Along with those things, we made sure to send our little guy with things to make his stay as “normal” and comfortable as possible. For us, that meant sending his travel sleep bed with sheets that smelled like home, toys from home, etc. I also sent our Owlet with him (with instructions for use). This was nice for us too because we could check his heart rate and oxygen levels at night while we were away on our app, which made us feel more connected while we were away.
- Shamelessly FaceTime (or any other video chat method you may prefer). I did this at least 4 times a day. In the morning when I knew he would be awake and in a good mood. During the day I tried multiple times. And I always tried to catch him before he went to bed. This was an important time because at night I REALLY missed our special time together, and this way I was able to say our little bed time mantra to him, even if that meant stepping out of a business dinner to do so. I am pretty sure MOST of NASHVILLE heard me say “HI BUBBY!!” and my shameless attempts to get him to “talk” to me and smile/laugh.
- SLEEP IN…if possible! How many times do you get this opportunity at home? Well, for me, the answer is NEVER! So while we were away I made a conscious decision to TRY and stay in bed until about 8:00. While I was not always asleep, and got up to call my little guy when I woke and knew he would be awake, just being able to lay around in bed for a bit was a great treat!
- Enjoy your time with your spouse/ partner (if that is who you are traveling with). When there is a baby involved, they are your number one priority, as they should be. Once you have a little life you are responsible for, you have to consciously make time to focus on your relationship with your spouse/partner and find creative ways to do so (even if it is the 20 minutes while your baby is napping and you are ACTUALLY about to hit the gym together…by gym I mean garage…for a change). When you are away from you little one, make a conscious effort to connect with your partner. Alone time with the adults you love is equally as important as the time you spend with your little one. Your little one feeds off the relationship vibes you have with your spouse/partner, and you are the model of what a relationship should look like, so putting in the leg work on that relationship is VERY important!!
- ENJOY and DO NOT feel guilty about it! This one in particular was difficult for me! But I survived, enjoyed my adult time, and was SOOOOOOO happy to have my little one back in my arms when we got back home!
Until next time…Here’s to Happy Travelling and even Happier Returns!