My fiancĆ© runs a charity golf tournament every summer in Mexico. I will be tagging along, not to golf, but to lie around, read, visit the spa, and eat a lot of guacamole. Iām super excited for this trip. To be blunt, it is a vacation for me. And to be blunt, I will be leaving my 10-week old baby behind.
Yes, Iām ditching my baby, which makes me a little anxious. But, mostly, I donāt have a problem leaving my baby behind since I have wonderful backup. My fiancĆ©ās mother is moving into my house for the week and I have a wonderful nanny as well. Itās not that Iām not going to miss him, because I am dearly. But since I canāt read the mind of a two-month-old baby, Iām not sure heās really going to miss me. All I know is when he wants to eat, needs to burp, needs a diaper change, or a cuddle and thatās only because he cries. Other than that, the baby is quite happy and quiet.
I know many parents, including my brothers and my sister-in-laws, who refused to leave their babies alone, even for a sleepover with my parents who raised four kids, until the kids reach a year old or longer. My best friend, who has four children, didnāt leave her first baby alone for a night until he was 14 months old. By the time she had her fourth, she went out without her youngest three days after his birth, leaving him behind with a nanny. The first time I left my daughter alone for a sleepover with my parents, she was three months old. I thought Iād really enjoy the night off, but how did I spend my night? I spent my night looking at photographs of her, calling my parents every 30 minutes to see if she was all right. But I was a first-time mother then.
I really donāt understand women who canāt or wonāt leave their babies behind for a night, if they have trustworthy help. āTake the help,ā I want to tell them. Go out and have a nice dinner with your spouse! Anyone who has babies or toddlers knows itās a total crapshoot how your baby is going to be in a restaurant. Weāve taken our son out twice for meals and they were both miserable experiences. Of course, leaving your baby behind for a couple hours for dinner, or even a night at the grandparents, is a lot different from actually going on a six-day vacation and leaving your baby behind. Iām sure a lot of people will ask (and Iāve asked this myself) if Iām a coldhearted bitch for leaving a two-month-old behind for almost a week. Iām not. My fiancĆ© and I really wanted a baby. Weāre not cold-hearted. What we are is super laid back. In fact, Iād go as far to say weāre doing a good deed by leaving him behind with his grandmother, who adores him to the point that she actually calls him āour baby.ā
Every time she babysits him, Iāll receive a call or an e-mail the next day telling me that she enjoyed her time āimmenselyā with our son. I know that my son is not going to remember me leaving him for this trip to Mexico when heās older. Heās two months old, like Iāve said, and canāt do much. Iāve taken my daughter on trips with me, pretty much all the time. What sheās grown into is a very mature traveler for someone her age or any age. Someone who, if I fall asleep on a plane, actually knows how to order herself a Diet Coke and a meal, and even can hand over my credit card (sheās knows the pin) to order herself some food. Because she also travels a lot with her father, sheās completely comfortable in new places and never gets homesick.
Alhough leaving my baby behind this young is a bit premature compared to how my daughter was raised, I think that it will be good for him. I think that, even from his early age, Iām teaching him a sense of independence. Iām teaching him that he has a lot of people around him who love him and will take care of him. Is me going away and leaving him behind a little selfish at his age? Um, absolutely. I admit that fully. Am I lucky to have such wonderful help? Um, absolutely. Will I miss him? Um, absolutely. But will I enjoy my vacation? Um, absolutely.