Friday 27th January 2017 – first night out in about a year where I could truly let my hair down.
Yet, roughly 4pm Friday, I was still conflicted as to whether it was too early, if I was ready, whether she would settle, what if she was poorly and we weren’t near home. All these thoughts run through your mind but as long as you are leaving your baby/child with a family member you trust and they are familiar with them, then they will be just as safe as being at home with you.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m a little way off being able to trust her to stay overnight anywhere apart from my parents but it was amazing to be able to get ready minus Emily craving constant attention, minus sick the moment after you’ve just got ready, minus being late for everything even if you planned it with military precision.
I am a pessimist, always worst case scenario, so although I trust my Mum over anyone, sometimes more than I trust myself, I was worried Emily would be upset we’d left, she might not sleep properly, what if something happened and I wasn’t near by. Every single reason is basically the guilt you feel as a Mum.
So, if I had one piece of advice (slightly long piece of advice) it would be – If you need a break, some time to be yourself rather than a Mum, start gradually. Leave him/her with someone you trust, who knows your child well and vice versa, say goodbye and leave to enjoy yourself. Just do it. It may be easier if you leave them for an hour to go shopping, then 2 hours while you catch up with a friend, several day-time hours to catch-up with your to-do list then finally overnight. Ease yourself in. Even though you will always miss them, it may take a while to transition from Mum brain to a functional human – once you have left them once you’ll already be planning the next time, haha!
So, you’re child will almost 100% be ok, they will not hate you for leaving them, they will be far more spoilt than they normally are at home…so why not? They will probably be so pre-occupied they probably won’t even notice you’ve left.
You deserve a night off, let someone else do the nappy changes, the feeds, give the constant attention, bath-time, bed-time.
You can be as boring or crazy as you like, have a candle-lit bath, watch a full movie that isn’t interupted every half hour (at best), go clubbing, go for cocktails or maybe just have an early night followed by a lie-in.
Then when you return to your child you’ll have never been so happy to see anyone else, you’ll be a better version of yourself.