I’m Gonna Take My Boobs And Go

So we’re pretty much done with the breastfeeding around these parts. Thanks to a combination of a sudden drop in supply due to pregnancy and Baby Evan’s obsession with peanut butter, we’ve gone from exclusive nursing to only once or twice a day in less than 3 months. (I can’t even begin to explain how much peanut butter that kid eats on a daily basis. I think if there was a sudden peanut shortage he would starve to death rather than eat something not slathered in sticky, nutty goodness.)

For a month or so I’ve been following the “don’t offer, don’t refuse” method of weaning, but in the past week I stepped it up to “distract and offer an alternative” even if Baby Evan specifically makes the sign for “milk” (to be fair, he uses that sign for milk, food, water, juice, and sometimes ATTENTION!!!!!). Today he skipped his remaining nursing session – first thing in the morning – and only latched for a few seconds as I rocked him down for his nap.

As ambivalent as I wasabout the end of our breastfeeding relationship, I can now say THANK GOD he’s done. Pregnancy has done weird stuff to my hormones. Weird, hurty, uncomfortable stuff. Rather than the warm-fuzzy-happy feeling I used to get when the baby nursed, now it just feels like someone’s gnawing on my boob. I have to grit my teeth to keep myself from clawing my own skin off and mutter “getoffgetoffgetoffgetofffffff” under my breath. It is…unpleasant. I don’t feel any differently about breastfeeding in general – and I can’t wait to nurse the next bebeh – but for NOW, I am dunzo.

ANYWAYS, because I am no longer nursing day and night, I no longer have to be here. I mean, YES, I do have to be here, because I am his mother and he needs me and loves me (despite the fact that he STILL doesn’t say Mama) and there isn’t anyone else to watch him while E is at work. But there is no longer an invisible tether attached to my nipples. Which means I’m having a teeny tiny crisis.

In August, I’m going to/hosting a bridal shower (and bachelorette party)(I’m DD)(because I can’t drink and because I drive a minivan)(at least being lame has it’s advantages for SOMEONE) for one of my oldest friends in Virginia. I had been trying to talk E into driving down with me, since 6+ hours in the car on 95 by myself with the baby sounds like the OPPOSITE OF FUN. Add pregnant to that mix and all I can think of is how much that sounds like the start of a particularly tragic Dateline story. Film at 11.

Today E suggested “Why don’t you just leave the baby here with me?”

OMG WHAT?

The idea of not bringing Baby Evan is both horrifying and incredibly appealing. NO BEBEH FOR A WHOLE WEEKEND? Where am I going to get my daily dose of adorables? How would he survive without me?? NO BEBEH FOR A WHOLE WEEKEND? I could sleep in as long as I wanted. I wouldn’t spend every second worried he was driving my mother crazy or falling down the non-baby-proofed stairs or pooping behind the dining room table. I might actually enjoy myself. Is that even ALLOWED?

For the record, I have NO DOUBT that E would do a great job with the baby by himself. I have zero concerns at all about that half of this equation. I’m worried about how I’M going to handle it.

Advice, please. Have you gone away without your kid(s) yet? Were you crushed with guilt and bad-mother abandonment issues? Are you dead?

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24 Responses to “I’m Gonna Take My Boobs And Go”

  1. Suzanne says:

    No advice, but I know I will be in the same position as you one day. Since my daughter won’t take a bottle and is nursing strong at 7.5 months, I am in the thick of the “invisible tether.” Leaving her for more than 2 hours sends me into a slight panic at the thought of the poor babysitter being stuck with a hungry, inconsolable baby. I know one day it won’t be this way, which will do wonders for my social life and my hair (who can sit through a 3+ hour highlighting session when the baby needs to eat?), but it will also mean a loss of control on my end.

    I think you should go and enjoy yourself- sleep in and don’t watch the clock!

  2. punch says:

    The first time I left my son (who is now nearly 7), he was 18+ months (somewhere around there, details are fuzzy). I had to go to a conference in DC. I stressed out about the idea for MONTHS, but I knew I had to go. I think if it were an option to stay home, I would have. However, we both lived, and it was actually good for everyone involved. I still cringe when I have to leave him, but I know it’s no big deal, and I actually enjoy the quiet (1st graders talk CONSTANTLY).

    However, I now have a 2 month old baby in the house, and the feelings of ‘I can’t leave him! Never! No!’ are back. Perhaps you have to break the seal with each one.

  3. Reid says “Mama” now. But not like “Oh hey, it’s my Mama.” Rather, you could just substitute it for “I don’t want to!!!” or “Get me out of here!!!” or “DON’T EVEN THINK ABOUT LEAVING ME HERE WOMAN!!!” so it’s not as adorable and exciting as I had imagined it would be. Sigh.

  4. I have left him over night. But for just the night time. In fact you were here :) But I’m thinking that you might as well take advantage of a little mommy-vacation while you can get it cause who knows when you next chance to sleep in will be.

  5. Emmie Bee says:

    We left Hudson for the first time back in September to go to a wedding in Tahoe when he was 8 months. It was really hard & we both didn’t sleep a wink for two nights. (Hubs & I, Hudson could have cared less.) & since then we have left him several times overnight with my Mom. In fact- he’s at Grandma’s for two nights right now. And we are home. Just, doing nothing. The twins we have left overnight just once when we went to a wedding a few weeks ago. Anyways- it’s hard the first time but after that? It’s easy peasy. Maybe do a trial run. Do you have family close by that will watch him overnight so you & E can go do something? Then when the party happens you’ll be more comfortable.

    • bebehblog says:

      That’s sort of the problem – we DON’T have any family in the area for a test run. The only time we ever tried to go out for any real length of time (a movie and some errands), Evan was just a few weeks old and he screamed the WHOLE TIME and refused a bottle. I’ve been too scared to try again since. At least this time he’d be with his father so I won’t feel *too* bad about any screaming.

  6. Miranda says:

    I went out of town for a bachelorette party when Joshua was about 3.5 months old. I was still nursing, so I had to pump while I was away. I was nervous for the entire trip down and I felt like calling/texting my husband a million times. However, once I got there and had a beer with the girls and slept until ONE O’CLOCK IN THE AFTERNOON and then lounged by the pool, I felt great.

    I say go and enjoy yourself!

  7. Krista says:

    You know… come to think of it, I DON’T think I’ve EVER left Carolyn for more than a day-trip or an evening out. Oh, no wait. My mom helped us move from CT to NH, and they stayed overnight together without me twice during that week.

    So yeah, ummmm now that I’ve been chained to my sweet dear for 3 years continually without a break (not that Carolyn ever cares one way or the other – she definitely doesn’t seem to notice when I’m not around), I know I’M ready for a break!!

    SO GO! And have TONS of fun and ZERO guilt. And consider it a personal “babymoon” (isn’t that what they call it?) since you’ll be unable to leave your new one for the next couple of years, too. ;)

  8. Audrey says:

    I’ve never left Ev overnight. I’ve never left him for more than a few hours due to long doctor appointments. Even on our anniversary we only ended up leaving him with his grandma..at OUR home…a mere 2 miles away from where we ate/saw a movie…for about 3 hours. I sometimes think about going away for a weekend and leaving him with Chris, though. I would totally do it. You can always call and check in and listen to heavy breathing on the other end of the line. :D

  9. raincheckmom says:

    Consider what e would say if he had a vote: Please strap me in a car seat for 8 hours and drive me to my wonderful grandmother’s house and then leave me with my wonderful grandmother all day and then strap me in a car seat and drive me another 8 hours home OR leave me at home for 3 days with my loving Dad enjoying father/son time (aka helping Dad play WOW)

    His wonderful grandmother would love love love to see him but you make the trip again in Sept. and he’s gotta come then…so she’s satisfied with whatever you decide:-)

    • bebehblog says:

      Thanks Mom! If we weren’t coming back in a month I would definitely bring him so you could see him, but we’ll have a rehearsal dinner, the wedding and maybe a day-after cookout to go to in September so you’ll have PLENTY of grandma-time then.

  10. We let our daughter Ginny Beth (10 Months) have her first slumber party and Grammy and Grampa’s house last night. I thought I would be terribly lost without her…but I fell asleep at 11pm and didn’t wake up until 715am and felt refreshed! We didn’t even make it back over there to pick her up until 1030 this morning! OMG! It was nice to have a break…I think you would enjoy the time away! Go for it!

  11. brigidkeely says:

    I’ve made plans several times to leave my 16 month old with his dad/in-laws anywhere from overnight to for THE ENTIRE WEEKEND (like, I’d leave Friday and come back late Sunday) but those plans have all fallen through. ALL OF THEM. EVERY ONE OF THEM. DAMN IT.

    I have felt no compunctions about it,at all. I AM TERRIBLE. However, I haven’t actually gone through with my vacation plans, so maybe I’d wind up freaking out and panicking or something. I don’t know. I have straight up Anxiety Issues, but leaving my child (poor delicate fragile defenseless baby!!!) with family members somehow doesn’t trigger anything. At least yet. Thank GOD.

  12. Amanda says:

    We started leaving Madison overnight with mom probably at about 10 months. Since then she has had a sleep over about once a month and LOVES it! I do top!

  13. Swistle says:

    When I had two children and they were 3 and 1, I had a funeral I wanted to attend. And I was gone for a whole weekend, and it was totally fine. I missed them in the “glad to see them again sense” rather than the “head exploding” sense, and my husband got an idea of what it was like to be me. WIN WIN.

  14. Jennifer says:

    My son spent his first night away from us when he was a month old. Breastfeeding didn’t work for us, so anyone could feed him. And I was a complete and total wreck from having a c-section, failing at bfing, having a baby who never slept… So my parents begged me to let them keep him so I could recharge.

    My son is almost 7 months old now. He spends ever-other-weekend with his grandparents. I drive the 2 hours to drop him off on Friday afternoon, and my parents bring him back Sunday evening.

    It works very well for us. I honestly cannot imagine never getting a single break from my son. I love him to death, but man can he be a challenge.

  15. Clarissa says:

    I know this may be a little unusual, but I’ve traveled (out of necessity) without my son quite a bit since he was born. I’m not dead, and have revived myself from the initial guilt-crushing feelings.

    I went back to work when my son was 3 months, and took my first work trip at 4 months. It was definitely hard – especially juggling the pump and all of that (but I *have* pumped in some unusual places as a result!!). He’s 2 1/2 now, and I’ve probably left him with his daddy close to 20 times. Most trips were around 3 days, and the longest was 14 days (word of advice: as much as you think you want to see him on video – DON’T VIDEO CHAT! You will have to restrain yourself from hopping on a plane IMMEDIATELY).

    Anyway, all of this is really just to say: it’s doable. It’s hard, but here’s the best part: he’ll get great time with his dad. I trusted my husband before leaving my son, but now — I am completely rock solid in the knowledge that he could handle *anything*.

    It will be hard for you, and you’ll think of him a lot. You might not even sleep that great. But you’ll be surrounded by friends, and that first snuggle after coming back is SO delicious!

  16. Carrie says:

    I’ve been on two trips without Peyton and my husband has taken her to visit his family twice without me.

    It has been much, much harder when I’ve been at home and she left because the house feels so empty but the trips I’ve gone on have been AMAZING. It was hard when I left on the first trip and I think my husband was super nervous (she was 4 months old at the time). I missed her like crazy, but getting to have some time away rejuvenated me and made me feel a little bit more… like me. Not just “Maaaaamaaaa” or a housewife. It also made it perfectly clear that I love my life as a mommy and I wouldn’t change it if I could.

    Also, it’s a great feeling to know how much you are missed and needed when you are gone. :)

  17. Amy says:

    I have yet to here “Mama” also. We play a game where we look at pictures and she points to the dog, to Dada, to the baby, etc. But when I ask her to point to Mama….blank stare. :(

    I have only been away from my daughter for 1 night so far. It was when she was 12 months old. We left her with my parents, who watch her while we’re at work too, so I wasn’t really worried about her being scared or anything. I was worried that she would be upset that I wasn’t there for the morning nursing session, but she woke and drank some milk from her sippy cup and ate breakfast with Granny and Grandpa and was perfectly fine.
    I missed her a lot, but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. Truthfully, the anticipation of leaving her was worse than the time we were really away from her. Know what I mean?

  18. I have to do this for the first time in September for a work event that is in Berlin. So we are stopping at the in-laws first and hubs will stay back in London w/ bub while I go work. I am freaking out about it, but having worked these events before I think it will be the best bet anyway b/c I won’t get to see her that much anyway and I’ll be exhausted for the 4 days. Oh and there’s a slight chance the hubs and in-laws will come to Berlin for a few days too, so that wld be good. But OMG being in a whole other country makes me has a sad.

  19. Londonmum says:

    i left Munchkin for the 1st time overnight when he was 8 months as I had to go away for work. I was miserable and worried he was going to miss me terribly. You know what, he didn’t at all and he and my husband were fine. Since then I have left him twice for longer periods (5 or 6 days) as have had to fly to the US for work. It gets easier everytime you do it because you realise that they are totally fine.
    It is really nice also to be able to have a couple of days to yourself without watching the clock for feeding times, naptimes, bathtimes, bedtimes and so on.
    I say, go hang with your girls and enjoy.
    The plus side is that the Es will get to spend some quality father and son time together. I can see the difference it has made to my boys. They love it.

  20. […] not saying I DON’T love my kid. I am just as guilty as everyone else of worrying people will think I’m a terrible mother if I want him to go away […]

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