In May, my husband and I are flying out of state together to attend my cousin’s wedding. For the first time ever, we’re both leaving our 4-year-old daughter at home for 4 nights and 5 days. She’s staying with my husband’s sister and will be in excellent hands, but can I make a confession?
I am freaking out!!!
When she had just turned 2, I had to go out of town twice within one month without her to visit my grandmother in hospice and then again for the funeral, but she had her daddy home with her both times. When she was 18 months old, my husband had to travel for work for a month and was only home on weekends. Again, she at least had me there to tuck her in every night.
We’ve never both left her.
It was hard enough getting used to the idea of childcare when she was an infant, but eventually that grew on me. She now loves preschool and goes every morning with a smile on her face, leaving me with a huge hug and “I love you mommy, see you later!”
I thought maybe the first time I left her overnight would be just one night with a grandparent, not half a week.
Deep down inside, I have this war going on. Excitement for my husband and I to fly out together when we haven’t flown together since our honeymoon… and yet this horrible fear that my daughter won’t understand why we’re not home with her and will miss us terribly. Obviously, we plan to talk to her on the phone every single day and there is this awesome technology called FaceTime (THANK YOU GOD), but still.
It’ll probably be easier on her than it is on me. She’ll be with an aunt who loves her dearly and will spoil her with fun activities and lots of cuddles. But…
What if she wakes up in the middle of the night crying for her mommy?
What if she has a bad dream?
What if she gets sick?
What if our plane goes down and then she’s left with no parents?!
Am I being irrational?
Her aunt is fully capable of taking care of all of these things (minus the obvious)—don’t get me wrong. Honestly, my daughter may not even ask for me that much, she’ll be too busy having fun at school during the day and with family members at night. But I’m sad. I’m sad and freaking out. I’m sure it’ll be easier when the day to fly out actually comes. I’ll realize that I need to relax and live a little.
Moms, how did you deal with the first time you left your child overnight? Do you have any tips for a crazy irrational mom who is losing her mind over this?