I feel like I should have redesigned my blog for my guest today. Maybe a red carpet, some sort of diamond-laden throne or a crown above the post title, because she is that amazing and loved and supremely talented.
I’m so honored to have Alexandra of Good Day Regular People sharing her memories of vacationing as a new mom here today. I’m sure you have read every word on her blog but if you have not you must read her tales of joining the circus, being a hypochondriac and having a teenager and then come back and read this…
You know what I can’t believe? That I once thought vacations would always stay vacations. That for the entirety of my life, going on vacation would always mean carefree and a breeze and y’all have a good time. That not even having children would change the joy of the words “we’re going on vacation!”
Oh how we remember the lessons we learn the hard way.
Somewhere along the line I managed to miss the connection that after having children I would be a mother. Specifically, their mother, and — that as their mother — I would be the one responsible for these children that I had had and that means I would be the one who would get things ready for any vacation that these said children would take.
Whaaaa? Right. Exactly right. You mean there’s no one else who will do all the packing for you PLUS all your kids’ packing? Right again. And no one to think about what to take, what not to take, what special needs there may be, and think about where to go, what to do, and have everyone up and fed and ready to go by 9 a.m. Saturday morning??
Yes to all of the above.
How is it possible to not know these things? I don’t know. I surprise myself on a daily basis. I mean, who did I think was going to do all this packing? Who did I see packing up and getting things ready to go for our vacations when I was a kid? I didn’t pack a thing for myself back then. I didn’t make plans or decide where we’d go or what we’d need.
Everything we needed for anywhere we went would just magically come along with us. It all just magically appeared. HA! Magically appeared as in the magic that comes from the MOTHER of me staying up until 4 or 5 a.m. packing things up for six children and then having everybody ready to go early morning.
Wasn’t I watching back then? Didn’t I even think for a minute that someday, when I was a mother, I’d be packing up the house for the kids to head to a cabin for a week? Why didn’t I realize the amount of serious work that lay ahead??
Who the heck knows and that’s an issue for another day but in the meantime, my point here is HOLY COW is that first vacation as a mother a brutal awakening. That first vacation as a mom; I mean, here you are, finally going someplace after being a mother for the first time in your life and you’re all excited about getting away until you figure out that you have to do the packing. Which basically means you pack up the house while you try to picture yourself wherever you’re going and crystal ball it in your mind for what you’ll need.
I remember our first vacation with our then 8-month-old baby.
Oh I’m just going to tell you this as fast as I can because I feel my heart starting to pound faster already with the PTSD trigger of this subject. My husband and I and the baby were leaving for our in-laws’ home in California. We were living in Wisconsin and I didn’t want our baby to be cold/hot/sweaty/chilly/
Right before I passed out [vs fell asleep, two very different things] I remember my husband saying to me, “Sheesh, honey, RELAX. We’re going on vacation. My mom will have everything we need.
Precisely. THE MOM will have everything we need.
What the hell did he think I had stayed up all night knocking myself out for?
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