Yes, you read that correctly. My husband and I went out at night for the first time since Baby MB was born. It took us nearly 7 months and two tries (one was foiled by a suspected case of cousin pinkeye), but we did it.
And I didn’t feel guilty at all.
No, for real. I really didn’t. (And I don’t feel guilty for not feeling guilty either, so ha!)
The past month or so has seen me slowly reach my breaking point due to a never-ending sinus/ear infection, baby illness, my work not respecting my maternity leave, changes in sleep schedules and various other small things building up. I started becoming this angry, grumpy person that I couldn’t stand. I did not want this person to parent my son.
So I called in the cavalry. My husband made sure I had lots of naps on the weekend. I went back to playing in the Festival Wind Orchestra on Tuesday nights. Grandparents pitched in to make sure I got an afternoon out shopping and a lunch date with my husband. This made a huge difference.
But there was still one major challenge we had yet to conquer – going out at night.
My husband and I have never been people who enjoy going out to clubs, but we used to get together with friends for dinner or go out to see a concert. But alas, these are all night-time activities, and with Baby MB still having fussy nights, we just found it easier for family to babysit him during the day and leave the bedtime to us.
When I got tickets to the Lake Street Dive show for Christmas, I seriously worried about how we were going to make that work. Life threw a bunch of obstacles our way. First, it was on a Tuesday night. Second, Baby MB is recovering from a pretty serious cold, which means that even when he goes down for the night without a fuss, he wakes himself up coughing and freaks out. Finally, the concert started at 8 pm. For us, this may as well have been 4 am.
But the universe didn’t realize how much I wanted to leave the house. Few things are as determined as a housebound new mom. We would make the concert or die trying. (Well, maybe not die, but definitely exert some major effort.)
some unsuspecting victims my parents to babysit, and gave them an excuse to take a couple days off. (Haha, suckers.) Then we gave the baby some baby cough medicine and pumped him full of breastmilk before running gleefully out of the house.
And how was it?
The show was amazing because the band is amazing, but that was not the only reason. I think I took a deep breath for the first time in ages. How did I go 7 months without breathing?? I clapped, sang and even danced.
I had thoughts about non-baby things, such as:
- Why do people yell requests at the band? They obviously planned their show before they got here. This isn’t your high school research presentation. (Looking at you, former students….)
- I wish I could dance with more carefree abandon. It looks so fun.
- Standing on a slanted floor for a long period of time is exhausting! When did I get so old that I began noticing? I stopped to stretch my calves in the middle of the show. What? I’m not 22 any more, okay?
I held hands with my husband. We snuggled during the ballad. We had a date. And it was as fun as I remembered.
I enjoyed myself so much that even coming home to a snot-covered, coughing baby who kept me up most of the night didn’t dampen the experience. In fact, some time away made me more empathetic and patient. I needed that space to breathe in order to come back stronger as a mom.
I am really proud of us, actually. We could have given up when things got difficult, or convinced ourselves that we were doing something selfish and should have stayed at home, but we didn’t. We took ourselves and our marriage off the back burner for a night. We made time for ourselves. We went out at night!
Let’s just hope it is not 7 months before we can do it again.