Monday, September 23, 2013

A Night Out

Last Friday I got to go out and see Ian's band play at Macayo's and it was a much needed night out.  I hadn't seen his band in months - probably about 9 months.  It's hard because Lemon is so tough to put to bed and so tough to keep asleep, that we don't have many options for a babysitter at night.  Which leaves Ian and I going out by ourselves whenever we want to go somewhere.

But, in swoops my mom and just makes everything seem a little bit more normal again.  My step-dad went out of town for 2 weeks and although I love him, I also love having my mom all to myself.  She loves Lemon more than anything, they are totally besties, and wants to spend every free minute she can with her (and of course with me, we are besties too).  I am so lucky to have her, WE are so lucky to have her, and I thank the man in the sky for her every single day.

Lately it takes Lemon about an hour and a half, two hours, to fall asleep at night.  We get her in the recliner with us at 7pm and then she usually falls asleep around 8:30.  It is so annoying and even more annoying when you remember that we worked all day, got home at 4pm and then have to sit for 2 hours at night, with a baby climbing all over us, when we could be spending that time together, vegging out on the couch.  She won't nurse to sleep, she will freak if we put her in her crib without sitting with her (she can cry for 4+ hours, crying it out just doesn't work) and if we let her sit in the living room and watch a movie or something she will want to get down and play.  She is a party animal and loves us just so much she won't go to bed without us sitting with her in the chair that is getting a bit small for a 15 month old and a parent.

So, having someone babysit her at night is hard because who knows if they will be able to put her to bed?  Who knows if she will wake up screaming (like she does once or twice every two weeks) and then go back to sleep for whoever is there?  Ugh.  So my mom is a lifesaver because she loves her Nani and will go to sleep with her, cuddling as well, and will go back to sleep with a few pats from her in the middle of the night.  And, if you've ever been nervous about having the grandparents watch your babe - try it.  Lemon is always on her best behavior when it comes to sleeping at night, at my mom's house.

But, last Friday, my mom came to our house after I put Lemon to bed.  I didn't think she'd stay asleep all night (they seem like they can always tell you have plans) but she did and my mom got to just veg out on the couch and watch her on the monitor.  And, I got to go out!

It took me forever to figure out what to wear (what are the kids even wearing these days?) and I was seriously having a small panic attack thinking of getting to go out after dark without the baby!  I did my hair, settled on a crop top and jean shorts, took a deep breath and headed out the door with tears in my eyes.   I got in the car with Christie and Drew and cried - it was just so rare that I go out after dark with makeup on and by myself.  It reminded me of my old self and I just felt so old and just like a mom - with nothing else defining me anymore.  I remembered a time when I could do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted and I was so nostalgic - hungering for that feeling again, then feeling it and then feeling guilty for wishing that for a moment things could be as they used to be.  Oh the mom guilt. 

It is such a paradox, being a mother.  You love your life (of course!), love your family and love your baby but at the same time there is a part of you that misses your FREEDOM.  And maybe it's because I was 33 when I became a mother and Ian and I were together 8 years before Lemon came - but it seems as if that was just a whole different life.  And sometimes I miss it.  (Even saying it is hard, admitting it is hard - I MISS IT.)  I miss it so much that I cry as a 34 year old in a Toyota Prius with my friends at 9pm on a Friday, on the way to a restaurant to watch Ian play for an hour.  So silly. 

Ian played for an hour and a half, my friends Christie and Drew drove me so I could have a few margaritas (one and a half and I died the next day!), we ate some chips and salsa and danced our pants off and had a blast.  IT WAS SO MUCH FUN.  I felt like a new person, like my batteries were recharged and like I could do this mom thing for another 10 months until I get to do it all over again.  I also felt a little like I couldn't wait until Lemon was just a bit older so that nights like this could happen more often.  But then here I was again, not living in the moment and just saying "I can't wait until . . ." again.  And then, more guilt.  Ugh.

So, I got a much needed night out and next weekend Ian and I will get to go out together, thanks to Nani again, for my birthday and I can't wait.  I hope that you have someone in your life that will watch your party animal babe, like we do, and that you and your husband (or your girlfriends!) get a night out as well.  Recharge those mom batteries and ENJOY YOURSELF.  You deserve it mama!!!


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15 comments:

  1. Hi Allison! As a new mom (Noelle is just a little bit younger than Lemon) it's always good to hear that other parents struggle with certain things too. Periodically (as Nono grows) her sleeping and nap schedules get really out of whack. How many naps does Lemon take during the day? Just this past week, we totally eliminated Nono's morning nap, and she just has one afternoon nap now. It's definitely an adjustment for her, but she's getting there, and it makes bedtime much easier! Just thought I'd share our experience, and maybe it would help you guys too.

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    1. Hi! Lemon takes 2 naps during the day and I know she would probably sleep better with just one, I know it, but I am not ready to transition her. We both work full time and I think I will try and wait until December when we have two weeks off so our nanny isn't trying to transition her napping instead of us. You know?! Ugh. Hang in there mama - we have to sleep one day! :)

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  2. I feel like I could have written this post. We are constantly redefining ourselves, especially as new moms, but I can't help to long for the person I was before baby. It kills me to even think it, but I knew that me so well and this me so little. As with all things time and margaritas heal all woes! Dang it, my husband needs to take me out! Ole!

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  3. Glad you were able to go out!! I haven't been out, at night since my little guy came 7 months ago. What ARE kids wearing these days?! :)

    Your sleep situation sounds like a nightmare. Wish I had some words of wisdom!

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    1. Hahhaa well the 90's are back and I saw a beanie (in 95 degree weather) and someone wearing an all black outfit with short shorts, tights and boots - in an AZ summer. So I have no idea what these kids are up to! Hope you get to go out soon!! :)

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  4. I went out for the first time in three ya I said it three years!!!

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    1. Three years! Gah!! Did you recharge?! Glad you got to go, you deserved it!!!

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  5. Thank you so much for this post, my daughter is the same age and I feel the exact same way. I love her SO much but I feel the same way as you. My husband and I were together for 5 years before we had our daughter and we could see live music every weekend, enjoy fancy dinners whenever we wanted, walked around the mall/target with leisure, and the list goes on.
    Thank god I have a mother like yours who LOVES my daughter to pieces but she is our only sitter. We have yet to spend a night away from her or go out past bed time. I just want to say you aren't alone. Oh mom guilt!!

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    1. Our situations DO sound very similar and we are VERY lucky to have our moms! I hope you get a night out soon mama!! :)

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  6. PS. Does Lemon like movement when falling asleep? What has helped us so much is an exercise ball. My daughter hates to be held but if I bundle her up and bounce on the ball with her she is out within 5 minutes, she can't fight it.

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    1. Wow, bouncing on an exercise ball? Genius! Now if only I could find ours . . . . ahhahaa, thanks! :)

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  7. I definitely could've written this one. To the fussy baby that won't go to sleep (or stay asleep) to the mom guilt I had no idea was so common until just now. I was definitely keeping those thoughts to myself. Feeling pretty damn awful about it. I'm so glad you were able to go out and recharge. Funny how one night makes you feel like you're good to go for another few months.

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    1. We are so similar my friend, so similar. I hope you get a night out when your man returns! ALWAYS thinking of you!!! xoxo

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