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Vacation with a Monster Baby

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Little Miss Momma: Vacation with a Monster Baby

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Vacation with a Monster Baby

Baby W is finally asleep...

The suitcases from my surprise Mother's Day mini-vacation are finally unpacked...

My frozen dinner has been consumed, a load of laundry is in the washer and the hubby is off at an activity for church...

I take a deep breath, pour a glass of diet cherry pepsi on ice, sit down with my laptop, and try to find the words to explain whats on my mind...

{photo from Getty Images, and no, its not me}

You see, something happens to me when I go on vacation.  Whenever I'm away from home, away from all the responsibilities and obligations of every day life, I make this unrealistic commitment to myself.  I commit that when I get home I am going to turn my life around, get everything in order, do all those things I have been putting off

I tell myself, "when I get home I'm going to clean out my closet and all my junk drawers, I'm going to officially declutter my home, I'm going to start that diet,  I'm going to start exercising every single day, I'm going to start reading classic literature, I'm going to cook dinner every night, I'm going to start doing flashcards with Baby W, I will get Lil W on a set SCHEDULE, I'm going to start writing my novel, I'm going to study the scriptures for 30 minutes every day, I'm going to read the newspaper and actually know whats going on in this world, I'm going to STOP watching TV"...and the list goes on.

You see, when I am on vacation, anything seems possible. And its not that these are unrealistic or impossible goals I'm setting for myself {I mean read the newspaper, how hard can that really be, ha!}.  After all, these are all goals that will inevitably make my life better...but for some reason, these are the areas I struggle with every day...these are the same goals I recommit to over and over.  And this last vacation, I did it again.

I told myself, when I get home, things are going to change...

And this time I want to believe its true.

Aside from the goal setting and commitment making, this vacation was different than past ones the hubby and I have taken--this time Baby W was with us.  

When the hubby announced my surprise Mother's Day gift of a trip to our favorite destination ever, the place where we spent our honeymoon {Catalina Island}--I became overwhelmed with excitement at the thought of introducing Baby W to the place that holds so many special memories for our little family. 

{Catalina Island, the happiest place on Earth}

I imagined Lil W having a blast playing on the beach, excited to explore the island in his stroller, baby-flirting with all the new people, enjoying the undivided attention from his mommy and daddy, and then crashing from exhaustion at the end of the day.  And to a large extent that's exactly what happened {minus the crashing from exhaustion part}.  

For 4 days and 3 nights Baby W did not sleep.  Sure he closed his eyes, he even snored a bit...but, without fail, just as mommy and daddy closed their eyes and drifted into stage 1 of the sleep cycle, Baby W was awake and crying loud enough to wake up our unsuspecting hotel room neighbors.  Needless to say, we were not the most popular family in the hotel. 

In addition, Baby W learned how to throw a full-blown temper tantrum this week--which he did often.  And because we were in a place where others were trying to relax and unwind, I couldn't just let him throw a fit until he calmed down, like I wanted to. Instead, I had to cater to his every whimper, which only succeed in increasing the frequency of tantrums.

The hubby and I spent our mornings taking turns waking up with Baby W at 4:45 am, because for some reason Lil W is confused about the whole sleeping in on vacation thing--instead, he decided to wake up an hour and a half earlier each morning. 

At one point on our "vacation" the hubby actually asked if I wanted to go home early.  And for some reason {one that I can't explain} when he uttered those words, I nearly cried.  To me, it was as if "going home"
 was admitting failure to this whole parenting business.  I mean, we have a baby now, so we are supposed to enjoy vacationing together, enjoy making scrapbook worthy memories why were we so miserable? 

I wish I could say that the remainder of our vacation was smooth sailing--but that would be a lie.  The truth is, the downward spiral continued.  By the time we arrived home, back to obligation and responsibility, we realized we were now in need of a vacation from our vacation.

Would we do it again, you ask? You know, we probably would. {Que another cheesy Little Miss Momma life lesson} Because aside from the tantrums and 3 hour night sleeps, we did enjoy ourselves at least a little bit.

And as miserable as our trip seemed at times,
our pictures tell a different story:

{And yes, Baby W did pee on Momma on day 1 of our vacation}

In 20 year from now, we'll look back at these photos, and we won't remember the stress and middle-of-the-night-lack-of-sleep-nervous-breakdowns. Instead, we'll remember the first time we took our son to our most favorite place and made new memories as a new little family {and we'll laugh about the whole temper tantrum thing--I hope}.

Once again, all in all, totally worth it! 

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At May 13, 2010 at 12:19 AM , Anonymous ElizOF said...

Lil W looks so adorable! Yes, the memories of her tantrums will fade and only the Catalina Islands and the wonderful weather and good experiences will remain .. Happy SITS Thursday and glad to make your acquaintance. I enjoyed the post and wish you and yours peace and love.Great post!

At May 13, 2010 at 5:27 AM , Blogger Heather L. said...

Hi! This is my first time commenting here =)

We have five kids, and I have to say that I have SO been there! Taking a crabby baby on vacation can be super duper stressful - I think it's even worse when you are in a "relaxing" place, like there's pressure to be able to relax but you are doing anything BUT relax! My youngest son is 14 months old, and he is in full tantrum mode these days. He is also a pretty inconsistent sleeper, so if we took him on a vacation (we haven't taken him anywhere yet) he would probably be AWFUL. I tried to go out to lunch w/him yesterday and had to take our food to go - he wouldn't sit still, screamed and cried, and stood up in his high chair. People were totally staring at us. I have to say that you are right, you won't remember all the bad stuff, you'll even look back and laugh at all the tantrums and even the sleepless nights. One day you'll long to be back on that beach with a tiny baby boy wearing his bathing suit and covered in sand, tantrums or not. Even though I've been through this before, it's hard to stay calm and trust me, we have some BAD days around here. I think you have a great attitude about it! Just remember that things will get easier. My 11 year old daughter had THE WORST tantrums ever. She was a terrible toddler! I was honestly worried that she was going to be some kind of social outcast because she was so bad! I laugh now, because the is the best behaved, sweetest, most mild mannered child we have. She does great in school, is involved in tons of activities, has lots of friends, and is a competitive dancer. If you'd told me that when she was two I would have said no way!

This too shall pass, I promise! Motherhood sure isn't for wimps, is it????? (((HUGS)))

At May 13, 2010 at 6:29 AM , Blogger @JessEsco said...

Awww what a nice surprise! I'm sorry it was not exactly smooth sailing, but yes, you will do it again and it will get better! Super cute pics.

At May 13, 2010 at 7:21 AM , Blogger Lane said...

I so get you on this post! Things just don't usually turn out like we picture them. :) We are taking our little one out of town this weekend for a wedding and I am sooo stressed about it. But, that's life now and we'll make do. We might even have a little fun. :)

At May 13, 2010 at 7:25 AM , Blogger Dan, Lauren, and Sadie said...

oh my heck how fun! even though wesley was a stinkerpot at times... i admit this makes me a bit nervous for our trip in august. sadie will be this age.. but i am still soooo excited to go to the beach and see everyone!and cant wait to see you guys in a couple weeks!

At May 13, 2010 at 8:16 AM , Anonymous Heather said...

You're a brave soul for taking the kiddo on vacation. It's tough traveling with a parents LOVE traveling and they have horror stories about taking my brothers and me on trips when we were babies.

But the thing is, by now, these stories are all HILARIOUS, especially because J. and I really enjoy traveling too.

At May 13, 2010 at 9:18 AM , Blogger Natalie said...

I love your outlook! And you are SO brave for going on vacation with a little one!
We have two short vacations planned for the summer with the kids, and I really think we are crazy. But I will remember your words of wisdom: in twenty years, we won't remember the stress.

At May 13, 2010 at 9:19 AM , Blogger Julia said...

My family and I spent a few days at dana point beach. We thought about taking a ferry over to catalina island but ended up not going. Your pics look amazing. Im wishing we had gone now.

visiting from SITS

At May 13, 2010 at 10:12 AM , Blogger Mama Hen said...

What beautiful pictures!! The pee on day one of your vacation will become a "funny memory"! Love your blog! I am your new follower! Visit me at Mama's Little Chick.

Mama Hen

At May 13, 2010 at 11:31 AM , Blogger Amelia said...

"FINALLY!!! I'm 5 months preggars and just found the cutest spring maternity fashion by Moody Mamas on!! I ordered the Maternity Nursing Maxi Dress in Teal after I learned about it on The Today Show - adooore! Can't wait to get my new dress!" Perfect for a vacaction!

At May 13, 2010 at 2:52 PM , Blogger Brittany@Love Stitched said...

LUCKY!! That was so sweet of Ben to surprise you with a trip to Catalina!! I am sad we never made it out there together!!! Maybe if we come down and visit this summer :) Wes is getting SO big I am so excited to see you guys!!! xoxo

At May 13, 2010 at 5:12 PM , Blogger Heather @ Simple Wives said...

I'm glad you had a little bit of fun, and the pictures are precious! :)

At May 14, 2010 at 3:10 PM , Blogger Kristyn said...

Traveling with babies is TOUGH! I remember one of our first trips Jackson was a monster baby as well. He woke up every hour all night long, SCREAMING! it was so horrible, and to make it worse at about 3 am when both parents and baby were hysterical our hotel neighbors started banging on the wall. Apparently they thought that we were making too much noise, it was one of those moments that you think "really, I know it's 3 am, if I could get him to shut up don't you think I would?" Ahhh... fun new experiences with a baby. And people will tell you that one day you will laugh at it, but don't worry I don't think my experience (more than a year ago) is funny yet, so just give it time.

At May 16, 2010 at 10:45 PM , Anonymous Leanne said...

The pictures are beautiful and prove you had a great time at least some of the time. You're right, as you look back you'll only remember the great time you had on your first family vacation. Not staying up most of the night. Well, you'll probably remember he peed on you, especially since you have the pictures to prove it. What a beautiful family!

At May 17, 2010 at 3:28 PM , Blogger Nina @ Momma Go Round said...

You are not alone...remember we DID come home early from the desert. It was so not a vaca. We missed you though and are happy you are back! Give the boys a kiss for me :)

At October 26, 2010 at 11:48 PM , Blogger LilBuckarooDesigns said...

I am going to start seeming like a stalker if I make comment on every post you write, but I can't help it! Your writing is so darn honest and so many times you say things that I experience, but just won't admit. All I can say is thank you! I am in LOVE with your blog!


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