Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Mom’s Day Out

I recently enjoyed my very first day away from my 21 month old son. Last summer I had hoped to get a weekend away but I also did not expect him to still be nursing. In the fall of 2011 I did spend about 5 hours away but that was the longest we had ever been apart until this past weekend. When I left him for that 5 hour stretch I was worried about him and how my husband would cope, this time I was all “Peace out suckers!”
That morning I woke up before the baby, excited as if it were Christmas morning.  Once he got up, I changed his diaper (my husband usually handles the first diaper change if he is home) and nursed him for as long as he wanted. That turned out to be about 15 minutes which is half as long as our normal first feed.   He had breakfast and I got ready. Then I offered him some boob and he nursed for a really short period of time much to my surprise.  Yo Gabba Gabba was on, Orion was mesmerized in his little chair, and I ran out of the house around 8:45 as if I was on fire.

I jumped into our cute little impractical Fiat 500, turned the seat warmers on, scraped the frost from my window and got my CD selection together.  I was ready for the 2 hour drive to Richmond to meet up with a girlfriend (who has a 10 month old) and see the Chihuly exhibit (awesome!), enjoy a leisurely lunch, and some shopping.  If you saw anyone bombing down 95 south in the left land on Saturday with a huge shit eating grin on their face, it was probably me.  It just felt good to be driving the fun car and not the mom car (Scion XB which I do love) and listen to my music (not children’s music) as loudly as I wanted.   

As we walked around Carytown, I noticed some stroller parking signs and was so happy that it was not currently applicable.  I was able to go into a vintage shop without fear of grubby little hands destroying lovely expensive things. I could stop in every store if I wanted without worrying about a small man’s behavior or needs. Yes, I did have a milk box, peanut butter sandwich, and veggie chips in the car but they were in case I got hungry.

I was in the mood for big sloppy burgers so we walked down to Carytown burgers and fries. I would have been impossible to order a burger there while navigating a stroller, the place was super packed when we got there around 12:15. My girlfriend and I both ordered the Kojack with guacamole, fires, and a beer. I rarely ever drink while the sun is out but this was a celebration and I enjoyed 2 beers without worry of getting my baby drunk on my boob juice. How nice to not have to rush through a meal and to be able to eat my food while it’s still hot instead of feeding Orion.

Someday I look forward to taking Orion to all sorts of museums but he is at the age now where if he can’t touch it and run around he is not interested.  The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts was crowed which usually drives me insane but I was in such a good mood and just happy to see people out supporting art and enjoying Chihuly’s wonderful glasswork.  We were able to take our time meandering through the museum and exhibit up to a point as I did have a 2 hour drive home and one could spend all day in that museum. At 4, we chatted over a hot cup of coffee without fear of it burning fresh baby flesh. Then it was time to go even though we did not get to talk as much as we wanted or see everything there was to see.

For the first time all day, I began to get nervous while driving home. How are my boys doing? What if I get a speeding ticket, or get into an accident or the car breaks down.  I played out each of these scenarios in my head. When I got near Fredericksburg, a light flurry of snow began to fall and most drivers in Virginia are clueless about driving in snow so there was always a slow down if we were driving downhill.  I was running a bit late so I called Patrick when I was about 30 minutes from home to let him know where I was.  I got home around 7pm and was very surprised to find that everything was perfectly fine

I walked in the house and Orion came running over to the babygate with a small toy mouse in each hand. He really wanted to show me his mice but the TV was on so he soon returned to his chair to finish watching his program. I was able to have a civilized conversation with my husband, tell him about my day, and show him the cute things I purchased. Then I asked Orion if he wanted to nurse. There was no reply until I turned off the TV and he was all “when did those boobs get here?”.   I nursed him and he was asleep in no time and slept through the night.

I was expecting to walk in the door to an upset crying baby and a husband at the end of his rope. Orion would run over to me, claw at my shirt and nurse for hours and be up a few times in the night. I was so happy to be wrong. That day we had 3 nursing sessions and nursed for just over an hour.  Since then he has nursed 7 times a day for 3-4 hours per day. This supports my theory that if I want to wean him I will need to leave him.  Working full time is starting to look pretty good. Now I just need to find a job that will pay me enough to cover the cost of daycare or even better has daycare available. Meh, I would rather be with my baby even if he loves my boobs more than me.

I made Patrick tell me all about their day together repeatedly so I could imagine it all in my head.  Patrick was also surprised by how well Orion did without me all day long. Orion napped in the car, then they went to the indoor playground. Keeping busy and having snacks is important to keep Orion happy.  But if there are boobs, he will want them and I have a hard time saying no but we are working on it.  Maybe in another 21 months I will be able to have a night away.  I hope it doesn't take that long but maybe once a month I can have a day away. I came back refreshed and excited to see my baby, I recommend it highly for every mom!          

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