I really didn’t want to feel the need to write this, but I have fallen prey to one too many “indirect” comments and feel the need to defend myself.
As you all know, or should know by now, I am a horrible mother who went on vacation without her children. Specifically, without my 3 month old baby. That’s right folks, I abandoned my children for 9 days so I could go frolic on the sandy shores of Cancun.
Tyler and I went to Cancun over New Years, and made the very difficult decision to leave the girls behind. There were many reasons behind this decision.
1. Financial: Although Gracelyn was free, Abrielle would have bumped up the cost of the already expensive trip into a range we could really not afford.
2. Practical: Tyler and I had the honor of being asked to be in the wedding party of our great friends, and wouldn’t have had anyone to watch the girls during the wedding. The wedding was the reason behind the trip, and I think it would have been poor show to miss parts of their special day because I was nursing, diapering or bedding the girls.
3. Health: Having only had one set of immunizations, I was concerned taking my baby on crowded planes, to busy airports and to a foreign country. She is too little for sunscreen, and I was very concerned about her getting sick or dehydrated. Furthermore, if I got sick or dehydrated, being a breast fed baby, she would have been in trouble too.
As the bride put it, I didn’t plan a trip to Mexico when my baby was 3 months old. The wedding happened to fall at that time. Speaking of the bride, Rachel, she has been there for me and the girls from day 1. She is such an important person in our lives, and such a good friend. It was important to me to be fully present for her.
For the record (because this is where I get a lot of criticism), Gracelyn was and continues to be a breastfed baby. Not that it is actually really anyone’s business but our own, but I pumped over 70 bottles of EBM for her to have while I was away, and continued to pump to maintain my milk supply while I was away. She didn’t have a drop of formula in the 9 days we were apart, and latched on like a champ when we were reunited.
Tyler and I are incredibly fortunate to have the family support that we have, and to have had the option to leave the girls with family. I have always said, and I maintain, that I think it is important for children to know that although Mom and Dad may leave at times, they come back. I experienced absolutely no separation anxiety with Abrielle when she was a baby, and I credit that to leaving her in the care of family and friends on occassion.
A lot of people made comments that it was probably “easy” for me to leave Gracelyn because she is my second baby. This was absolutely not the case, and it was really difficult for me to leave her. I had an easier time leaving Abbers, because I knew she would have a blast with her Grandma while we were gone and honestly probably wouldn’t miss us. I shed a lot of tears and had a lot of heartache leaving both girls, but mostly Gracelyn. She is just so little, and physically needs me so much more.
She and Abbers did just fine while we were gone. Gracie slept through the night every night, despite being in a different crib and being bottle fed. I actually came home to a baby who now goes to bed 3 hours earlier than when I left (yay for 12 hour sleeps!). Abby didn’t miss a beat, and continued to be her chatty, effervescent self.
I missed the girls like crazy while I was gone, but don’t regret my decision to leave them. A lot of people have looked at me (very judgementally) and said, wide eyed, “I could NEVER leave my baby”. And that is ok. That is you, and that is your baby. You know what is best for you and your child, and I would never assume because something was right for me that it would be for you too.
So maybe you could do me the same courtesy?
Ok, I am done with this grumpy post. Here are some vacation pictures!