So I don't like being away from my kids overnight. They don't even stay the night with grandparents, because I just miss them. I have only been away from DD1 (almost 5) 5 whole nights in her entire life, and that includes the 2 nights I was at the hospital after having Lainey. And she was 3 when we left her overnight for the first time.
I have to go to a conference next week, and I have to be gone 4 nights/5 days. I am FREAKING OUT. Lainey is still nursing, and she comes into our bed halfway through the night. She always wants me. When DH brings her in, she goes straight to me. Last night when she came in, she put her arms around my neck, smiled, pulled me close and said "I love you." It is going to be so hard on her when I'm not there for 4 nights in a row, and hard on me (and hard on DH and DD1 because there is going to be lots of middle of the night crying). I'm also going to have to pump some because she's still nursing, and as I found out one busy day, I get painful and slightly engorged if she goes 12 hours without nursing.
Am I abnormal to feel this way? I have been panicked about it ever since I found out, but now that the time is almost here I am freaking out and can't stop crying when I think about leaving.
Does anyone have any advice on how to make it easier to leave/be away?
Hells no, you're not abnormal. I'm dragging DH and Teagan with me to a retreat this weekend because I can't fathom the idea of leaving them home alone. I also put off a conference until next summer. If I didn't have the option to postpone these things or bring them with me, I'd be in your boat. I'd have to pump too for sure. I get uncomfortable around the 12 hours mark as well. I don't really have any advice because I've never done it but I can try ..... When we decided to night wean, DH took over night duty. It did involve some crying but we found that she would calm down if he took her to our bedroom and showed her that I wasn't in there (because I was hiding in the kitchen). Somehow, knowing that I wasn't just holding out on her made her feel better. Perhaps Lainey won't freak out as badly because you won't be there. They're surprisingly adaptable, those little monsters. Also, try having DH give her water those nights you're gone. It might help. They can't cry when they're drinking so I think it helps to give them a second to calm down.
While you're gone, just keep yourself busy and really take advantage of being away. Otherwise, the guilt has a tendency to accumulate.
We've been dreaming of getting away for a weekend and leaving Teagan with a grandparent. In preparation, DH has taken over putting Teagan down at night on the weekends. It hasn't been anywhere near the nightmare I thought it was going to be. He just does exactly what I do but instead of nursing to sleep he snuggles her while she sips water and drifts off. I'm really not worried about the effect skipping nursing will have on her anymore. I have no doubt I could be gone for a month and she'd start right back up when I got back. If we do get the chance to get away, I will definitely pump to keep myself comfortable and keep the reservoir up and running.
I agree with Erin completely. You are far from abnormal for feeling this way. I cannot give advice on being away while still nursing, but I have had to be away from Evan for a few nights at a time twice now. The first time was tough, but I brought books with me and tried to keep myself busy. I also had DH send me pictures during the time I was away, and I called and "talked" with him at night. I think DH enjoyed getting time to himself with DS, but was ready for some help when I got back home. The second time was still hard, but not as bad. We have gone off together maybe twice since he was born. Each time was for one night only, and Evan was with my parents. The first time I kept calling and feeling guilty, but I know that DH and I also need some QT together without him. Good luck with this, I know it's not going to be easy, but you can get through it.
ITA with the others...I would be freaking out too, and that's even without the nursing part. I, too, have been dreaming of leaving DD with a grandma, but I'm just not feeling quite ready yet. Still, Erin's advice is all sound, and I think it's actually going to be a lot harder on you than on your DD...they really ARE surprisingly adaptable. It's like how DD will totally flip out WHEN I am leaving, but once I am gone for like 20-30 seconds, she's totally fine. Good luck...I hope you are able to at least enjoy stretching out in a bed to yourself, since you have to do it anyway
(Also, I'm totally jealous that your DD says "I love you" already...mine talks a blue streak, but that's one we haven't heard yet! And it's certainly not like she doesn't hear it enough...I often say "Did you know that I love you?" and she always says "Yes." Oh well, our time will come!)
Last edited by cactuswren; 05-16-2012 at 05:15 PM.
I was in your same boat a few weeks ago when we had DS3 and I was a little freaked out about having to leave Odin over night. DH has been putting him to bed for a few months now but without either of us I thought it was going to be a disaster. Luckily I knew my mom would be there for him and everything went suprisingly well. He was better for her at night then he is for us. I was floored honestly but it totally eased my worries that all was ok with out me or DH. Your DH knows the routine for the girls so luckily and to me that is what made being away from us so easy for Odin. My mom stuck to the routine. I don't have any other advice but I know the girls will do great with their dad. It will be harder for you for sure.
Oh yes, and take some time (since you have to be away) to enjoy some solo stuff to yourself!
~Joy~ DS1-8/5/05, DS2-10/18/10 (VBAC#1), DS3- 4/11/12 (VBAC#2!)
I totally get it. I was supposed to go away for a conference in September, but now it looks like it's canceled ( new government which has slashed budgets meaning pretty much no staff development especially if travel is required). My plan was for my Mum to fly down with me so she could watch Ronin during the day and he could be with me at night because I don't want to leave him, and also I know he would not cope well, he has only been put to bed by someone else once in his entire life.
I am actually hoping when I have my next baby that it is a super fast birth and I accidently have it at home so I can go to hospital and be checked out very quickly. It could happen, we have at least 2 hours from when I make the call for Mum to get here to watch Ronin.
Yep, you're normal! I have no advice to give since I haven't been away from Aiden more than 8 hours so far. ((hugs))
Until I had Kole, I hadn't been away from Lyla for more than 3 hours, and that was during the day. MIL wanted us to let them take Lyla to their house 'for a few days' when the new baby arrived, but that didn't happen for a number of reasons. My mom was here at my house for a week before DS was born and she stuck to the bedtime routine and Lyla had no trouble at all. I don't think she even missed me, and I was gone for 2 days and 2 nights. I, however, missed her like crazy. When we got home from the hospital, she was taking a nap and I had a tearful breakdown because I'd missed her so much.
You are totally normal, and I don't know if I could do it if I were in your shoes.
I have left Chloe stay overnight at my moms house 3 times so far. Honestly, Chloe did not care and had a lot of fun! I am not nursing anymore though, I could see how that would be hard. It was nice to get away with dh those times..
I can imagine if it was for work how I would feel bad though, because I would also have to leave dh ( I am weird and hate being away from my family alone). I am sure it will work out though.