Last night we dropped Carson off at Carrie and Rob's around 5. We stayed and hung out for a little bit, giving Carrie "instructions" (very loose instructions about when he'll eat, go to bed etc..) and saying bye to Carson. Even though he's too young to put two and two together, I don't like the idea of sneaking out - tricking him per se, in order to get away without a scene. So we gave hugs and kisses, said goodbye, and his lip came out so Carrie took him downstairs with Isabelle to look for some toys.
Jeff and I were off. I kept wanting to call to see how it was going, but everyone convinced me to wait until after he would be in bed. I just wanted to be reassured that he wasn't upset and being a nightmare! I finally called Carrie around 8:30, and yes, he was pretty sad for about 45 minutes. He'd be OK and playing with the kids, then start to look around for us, and we weren't there so he'd cry. Then he would be distracted again and be happy, then notice we still weren't there and be a little sad. But everyone was singing and playing with him, so he eventually gave in and decided it was fun there. He didn't really eat his dinner but happily munched on some cut up pear and some goldfish crackers. After hearing all this, my heart was a little sad knowing that he had been sad but then Kate convinced me how good it is for Carson to get exposure to different people, and this is his aunt and uncle and cousins who love him more than anything!
(god I wish I could crumple Kate into a little ball and carry her around with me at all times, she's the most fantastic caregiver in the world. We've been friends since Grade 7 and she's gone for her ECE and for a degree in child studies, worked at 4 different daycares and now is working with kindergartens and is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to raising kids and everything that comes out of her mouth makes absolute sense to me. I know all mothers have different thoughts on how to raise children and Kate and I are on the exact same page, every book she's ever recommended to me is brilliant!)
He went to bed without a hitch and slept through until 7 this morning. I of course, no matter how late we were out last night, couldn't sleep past 5 (been waking up so early for bootcamp for the past week) so finally around 7 I got dressed and was out the door, on my way to Tim's for coffee and timbits for the "babysitters" and at their door before 8. Carson was in the booster seat, happily eating some fruit, looking at Bailey (the dog) - he looked over and saw me. Kicked his feet and a huge smile for his mom, but then went back to looking at Bailey and singing while he ate. So yes he was happy to see me, but he was quite happy where he was too!
Which made me SO happy. I want Carson to be comfortable around other people, I don't want him to know only his mom and dad and to not want to be around others. I want him to want to learn new things, sleep in new places and be comfortable with change. We have a routine here at home, but if we stray from that routine I don't want him to be all out of whack and not able to deal. I love that I can let him go for a sleepover and not be a nervous wreck all night. I love knowing in my heart that if anything happened and I needed to drop Carson off any family member that he wouldn't scream for 24 hours until I came back. What kind of fun is that? I love that I am confident in myself as a mom to not feel like I'm abandoning him, or being a bad mother for wanting a night out. It has nothing to do with being away from him, and everything to do with being with my friends, my husband, adult conversation and lots of laughs. Above all, I'm LUCKY that we are surrounded with family who want to spend time with Carson. We wish all his grandparents and aunts/uncles/cousins lived here too though. Jeff and I were talking about looking around our neighbourhood for teenagers that babysit too - in the next year or so I think it would be great to have someone around that could come by for a few hours if Jeff and I wanted to get out. I'd feel most comfortable with someone in the area who had their parents nearby... just in case of emergencies. I was babysat as a child, I babysat when I was a teenager, so why the heck wouldn't I think it would be good enough for Carson?
He had a 3 hour nap this morning (I called Carrie and asked her is she drugged him) and is going onto hour 2 of his afternoon nap. I can't imagine how much he will get tired out when he can actually walk! I'm always happy when he sleeps ton, in my crazy little mind I think it has to do with how much fun/learning/exercise we get while he's awake!