March 11, 2013

First Trip Without Our Baby

Having a child has forced my husband and I to experience all kinds of firsts, which usually center around our baby boy. Seems the whole world centers around our little bundle now. This weekend we experienced another first- our first trip away together without our baby. I must be honest; it wasn't as hard as I thought it might be. Granted, he stayed with his adoring grandma so I didn't need to worry. I've always heard stories of moms who leave their babies overnight for the first time, crying because it's so hard to be away.  Come on, you know you've heard them too. I did not experience this. In fact, I was looking forward to some time away with my Mr. Right. I was looking forward to sleeping a whole night through without having to get up for a feeding. I was looking forward to waking up well after 5:30 a.m. and actually feeling rested. And you know what? I don't feel guilty about it.

It's tough caring for a little one around the clock. Truth be told, we get exhausted! Now, I love being a mother with every ounce of my being, but I also love having a healthy marriage. That's why I don't feel guilty for letting Grandma have some bonding time with our baby while we rest and re-group. Some of the best advice we've been given since becoming parents is to keep our marriage strong, our friendship close, and our love alive. That's why we go on a date every month and it's the reason we decided to spend our first weekend away together, finally!

Don't be mistaken, I missed my boy (we both did). Sure, I called to check on him a couple of times each day. Yes, I took some pictures of him along to look at...and I looked at them several times. I missed his sweet snuggles. You guessed it, we checked out of the hotel a little early...even eating lunch in the car to shave a few minutes off the drive to pick him up from Grandma's.

But that's healthy!

Despite the pressures of our mixed-up world, our marriage actually is a higher priority than our son. If we keep that strong, we'll be better parents in the long run. What's most important is that we had time to focus on being Mr. and Mrs. for a couple of days instead of Mom and Dad around the clock. I suspect we won't regret it when our kids (present and future) are all grown up and move away. After all, we'll be stuck with each other. We might as well enjoy each other's company!

God first. Marriage second. Children third.

And as for Grandma...judging from the plethora of new baby gear at her house, I'm guessing she is up for the challenge again. :-)

So if you're a new mom and nervous about leaving your baby overnight, rest assured. As long as you've got a trusted caregiver who loves your baby, you will survive.  You might not cry. You might even have fun! And I'll bet you won't feel guilty when you wake up from that glorious, restful night of sleep!

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