Some Alone Time

Some Alone Time

Simon will be seven months next week. In those seven months Micah and I have gone out together exactly twice. Once in Hawaii when we went to the temple and left Simon with a neighbor, once in Ohio when we went to the Irish festival and Mom Heiselt watched him. I am telling you this because I need help. I need to be reassured that it is okay to let somebody watch Simon for a few hours. I need to know that other people have had a hard time taking this step. I need to be reminded about how important it is for Micah and I to have some time with just us (especially since the munchkin sleeps in our room and has allowed us exactly one uninterrupted night’s sleep in the past seven months).The problem is not that we don’t have people who are willing to watch him. Several people in our branch and friends we have made and become reacquainted with have offered to take Simon off our hands if we ever need them to. I trust them and when they offer I fully intend to take them up on it. But when we get around to actually making plans I am filled with doubts and start making excuses. I worry about him screaming inconsolably. I worry about us coming back safely to him. I think that it would be so mean to go somewhere without him. (After all, wouldn’t he love to see “The Grinch” on Broadway?) I think it is too far to a friend’s apartment and dropping him off and picking him up will make our night too long and it would just be easier on everybody if we took him with us. I think about all we have done so far to ensure that one of us is always with him, even when I have school and Micah has work and I think it would be a shame to break our streak now.
So tell me now, am I crazy? How do I go about allaying my fears and lengthening the leash that Little Simon has on me?

11 thoughts on “Some Alone Time

  1. If it’s any consolation – I am one who often offers to watch my friends’ kids. I truly mean it when I offer, and I always hope they’ll truly take me up on it. Having almost got my MA in child/family therapy I can tell you that not only does the prophet encourage, but there’s lots of research to back up the importance of some couple time once kids are on the scene. If you’re friends are like me they REALLY MEAN it when they offer. I’m sure it will be hard to leave him but think of it as giving him the opportunity to practice his social skills and learn to adapt to new situations, if he goes to someone else’s home. Or if you want, Jacob and I can come stay the weekend and we’ll stay in with him while you guys go out! Just do it, and when you do, try really hard not to feel guilty – just live it up in the moments with Simon, and then in the very few moments you’ll have alone with Micah! You never know, Simon might have such a great time playing with someone new you might just want to go on another date in another 7 months!!! :)

  2. I am feeling you lizzie! I second everything you say. My advice to you: Take baby steps, don’t leave him if you don’t want to, just because you’re feeling pressure. When you do decide it’s time, maybe have the babysitter come to your house, so that the travel time to and from Simon can be shorter. Or do something close enough to the sitters house that you can get back quickly if needed. When you start leaving him try just an hour or two at a time, so he can get used to the idea of someone else watching him.
    I slowly worked into it, but i still don’t like to leave her for more than 2-3 hours. I found thats plenty of time to do dinner or watch a movie. Not both yet, but it’s the best of both worlds. I get a date with my husband but am not away from my baby for too long. Plus she really has learned to enjoy spending time with a new face every once in a while.

  3. Sure wish Grandmas could teleport — I’d be there tonight! Hope you get out before Christmas, but please plan on going a few places when you’re here. You need to get out and Grandmas love/need to be with their grandkids!

  4. I’m also someone who has volunteered to watch my friends’ babies for them so they can go on a date and have never had anyone take me up on it. I assumed it was for the very same worries that you cited, so I can understand how it would be hard. I also probably couldn’t calm their baby as well as they could, or know all the things to watch out for, but we’re responsible people and if there really was a problem, we wouldn’t hesitate to call the parents for advice.
    With all that said, I REALLY want to give my good friends a chance to enjoy each other alone. I’m willing to travel far to go to their house so their child can feel more comfortable. And for us, a baby is novel, so we’re not going to get bored, even if we’re there for hours. And I can assure you your friends feel the same way.
    I don’t know if any of that helps. I agree that taking it slow sounds like a good idea. I also have friends who trade baby sitting, so the kids and parents know each other. Others get takeout for their sitters as a thank you.
    Good luck with figuring it all out Lizzie! I hope you and Micah get some good time together. Simon is lucky to have parents like you!

  5. Lizzie – I don’t have kids so I cannot begin to relate to the attachment / love you have for Simon. At the same time I always think of how we turned out. Our parents left us when we were little and we’re ok. (Well Micah is a different story…) I would echo some of the other comments in start little. Maybe you two go to dinner close to a friends house, or go somewhere once Simon goes to bed in the hopes he will sleep for awhile. You two need time for you to breathe and stay connected. Simon will be fine with any of the people who have asked to watch him. I am sure many of them have been parents / are parents and so could handle anything Simon would throw at them. He’s a little guy, they expect that stuff will happen like crying and screaming. It goes with the territory. You and Micah staying connected and having time away will only help Simon in the long run. (Wow look how profound I appear) :)

  6. ambrose is 7.5 months and we have left him twice as well in very similar circumstances- haha! so obviously i am not going to be leaving any advice, but rather reading all the comments. my mother in law even lives downstairs, but i just worry that it will be a horrible night for her…etc. so i guess this was all really great for me to read. thanks!

  7. I was SO the same way. Even when we lived with Conan and Missy–I never felt like I wanted to leave him with them (like they would have a hard time!) because I didn’t want him to scream the whole time. I think in Clark’s first year we could count on one hand the number of times we were alone. My advice is what’s been said already–start small. just a few hours at a time…it’s not like you’re making him spend the night or anything. Also, go at a time when you know he’s at his best. If he has a hard time right before falling asleep, then go catch an early movie or lunch. Also, some people think that once you’re on a date, not to think of the baby again until you’re home, but I’m not like that. I just felt better calling once to make sure he wasn’t screaming (because if I just came home and they told me he was great I would be skeptical, but if I called and heard him laughing in the background I’d feel better).

    My other advice is this: Just. Do. It. You’ve got to start sometime. Then once you do it a few times it gets a whole lot easier!

    Good luck!

  8. it’s like u get into my head or something, lizzie! okay, here’s the thoughts of a new mother who has her son 2 days (maybe 3 if i fake sick and can’t stand to be away from ahonui any longer) out of the week…the most rewarding part of coming home from work every day is seeing the enormous smile on that little boy’s face. sometimes i get that horrible feeling like he thinks my mother-in-law is his real mother – but that smile and the attempted excited jumping motion leaves no room for doubt – he knows i am his mother – and no matter how long or how far away i am from him every day, that unconditional love will always be there. so as heartbreaking as it may feel to leave him with someone other than micah, it’s definitely a necessary growing step for all of you…but u already know that – so this is just my reassurance. hehehe. good luck!!

  9. Oh Lizzie, I wish I could relate better, but I am one of those freaks that left my firstborn with a friend at two weeks old so I could go to a movie with Conan. I just have a very strong conviction that husband and wife are the center of your family, not your children. Your relationship will be stronger for having those times alone with just the two of you. And maybe Simon will cry. But in an hour he won’t remember, and your relationship with Micah will be stronger for time and all eternity if you keep dating a part of your marriage. The more you do it, the more comfortable you will all feel with it. Good luck, guys!

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