Last week Olive and I went on our first vacation since our baby was born. It was a short 4 day trip to nearby Seattle. It was a momentous occasion because it would be our 6-month old daughter’s first road trip and the first time she used her baby passport (now you would expect a baby passport to be smaller than an adult passport, because all things baby are smaller and cuter and have pictures of baby giraffes and elephants on them – but the person in charge at the passport office must have missed the memo).
On Wednesday we created a list of all the things we would need to bring for the baby: clothes, diapers, diaper wipes, stroller, exersaucer, playyard, toys, sunscreen, baby bottles, etc…. it was a long list. On Thursday morning, we packed everything into the car, said a quick prayer and left for Seattle.
The only problem was that we brought the wrong baby.
The baby we were supposed to bring was the one that slept through the night. The baby that rarely cried. The baby that smiled and laughed. The baby that napped well in the day. The baby had a good appetite and ate well.
I’m not sure where that baby went.
Instead, we brought the baby that cried all night long. The baby that was whiney and cranky in the day and wouldn’t nap. The baby that didn’t eat well. The baby that fussed all the time.
The first night in Seattle was the worst – Alena woke up every hour crying the entire night. We would have to rock her back to sleep, only to have her wake up the next hour. We did not get much sleep (we’ve nicknamed this trip the “Sleepless in Seattle” vacation).
Maybe it was because Alena wasn’t used to sleeping and being in a new environment. Maybe she was having a growth spurt right exactly during that trip. Maybe she didn’t like the fact that she was sleeping in the walk-in closet (we thought it would make the perfect little room for her… but apparently not).
We were very tempted to drug our baby (with baby Tylenol), but we didn’t.
Alena did get better as the trip went on. On our last night there, she managed to sleep through the night.
We did manage to see some sights in Seattle and eat at some great restaurants recommended to us by friends and family. We were grateful to spend time with very good friends who flew in from Michigan to vacation with us. Our friends are expecting a baby in October – hopefully their interaction with our travelling baby didn’t scare them about parenthood too much.
We knew that life with a baby would be very different. Going on this little vacation made this truth all the more evident.
What was your first trip with your baby like? How old was he/she and where did you go?