I have a secret, I’m pretty over protective of my kids. Travis and I have not had a night out without children in two years. When Ellie was born I rarely left her side, let alone the house. Fears of her heart failing and me being the only one who could recognize the symptoms quick enough, left any notion of a date with my husband seem vastly unimportant. Then after surgery there was recovery, then colds and coughs and teething and I felt my need for a life outside my children was being smothered, smothered by motherly love, but left aside nonetheless. So Travis’ work holiday party arrived and we booked a babysitter and I broke out my high heels and a night of kid free entertainment was planned. Our first date in two years went something like this: I developed a horrible cold the morning of the party. A cold which Mya gave me and Ellie was in the midst of. Our babysitter arrived 45 minutes early while I was still in my bathrobe. Both girls refused to eat dinner. I put Ellie to bed and as I laid her down in her crib, cuddled with her favorite stuffed animal, she gave me the saddest face I have ever seen and started crying. Ellie may not always go to sleep immediately, but I can brag here and say that she never cries herself to sleep. Most nights I actually hear her laughing right before closing her eyes to drift off into a calm slumber. While getting dressed I noticed a huge hole in my panty hose and searched for a replacement only to find a pair two sizes too small. Upon seeing me in my dress Mya was so shocked not to see me in sweatpants she actually demanded I leave the dress at home for her to sleep with. I gave the babysitter a six page packet, including emergency numbers, bios of the kids, and directions from the hospital to our house should an ambulance driver not have GPS. She should have upped her pay at that very moment. Once we were finally safe to leave the house, I somehow scratched my eye on the way to the car so badly that I had to make an emergency eye appointment the next day and am still on antibiotics to treat the unexplained injury. So all in all the biggest disaster start to a date ever experienced. However, both children did go to sleep. And Travis and I drank wine and laughed and wore clothes that say dry clean only on the tags. And when we came home, our babysitter was watching TV with our dog on her lap, both monitors within arms reach and everyone was okay. It paved the way for a future of being okay with moments where I trust my kids can be taken care of without me, because, honestly, if that weren’t so it could be a lot of pressure. So maybe we’ll wait for me not to have a cold or a day I just bought new panty hose or I will refrain from even touching my eye for our next night out. Or maybe we’ll see that a perfect scenario may never exist, when no one is sick or everything runs seamlessly, maybe just accepting that our kids can handle a night without us and that we can handle a night without them is all we need.
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