Angela Chee: When I tell people I just left my baby for almost 2 weeks to go to Italy with my husband, they either think "How could you leave for that long?" or they can't wait to start planning their trip.
Believe me: it wasn't easy. My son will be one this week. We had planned our trip when he was only a few months old. Our friends with kids kept telling us that we needed to get away alone, before it's too late. Going on vacation was the last thing I was thinking about when I was just getting the motherhood thing figured out. But when it was time to go, I was glad we had planned it. Leaving was actually harder than being gone. The weeks before I left were filled with anxiety. I was nervous about leaving my son, even though I knew he would be perfectly fine with my mother-in-law. I felt guilty. While I deserved some time with my husband, it felt strange to leave my son. I didn't even pack until the night before because I wanted to make sure he had everything he needed, that laundry was done, food was prepared, and everything was in order. I even weaned him off breastfeeding.
While I missed my son, I have to admit it was nice to not wake up at 6:30 AM, to not have to breastfeed and worry about what he was going to eat or not eat that day. It was just me and my husband and a bottle of wine. I was able to forget about missing him for moments throughout the day, but as a mom you can't help but think of your baby every time another baby or child goes by. But technology made it easier. With Skype, we could not only talk to my son, but we could see him on the computer. I'm not sure he understood exactly what was going on, but he waved and blew kisses. We watched him eat his lunch and throw food ... nothing had changed.
For you moms out there who are considering a vacation -- he didn't forget me. The first morning back at home when I went to get him out of his crib, he did stare at me a little longer, but once I picked him up it was like not a moment had passed.
|Angela Chee is a television host, voice-over artist, and creator of TheZenMom.com as a resource for other moms because motherhood isn't always so zen. She is a first-time mom.|