Yesterday, I did something very different: I left the house without Jaxon. Before this, I had been out twice without him. The first time, I was back within 5 minutes and he slept the entire time. The second time, he was about 7 months old. I fed him right before I left. I was gone less than an hour and he slept most of the time I was gone. To say I don't like leaving him would be an understatement.
But I had a doctor's appointment, and he was asleep when it was time to leave. He usually wakes up from his morning nap in a great mood and then eats some baby food, so I knew he wouldn't be needing to nurse anytime soon. As long as he didn't fall over and hurt himself or get upset for some other reason, he'd be fine (when he gets upset, only mommy's milk calms him down).
But would I?
I really didn't want to leave him. But I was seeing a new doctor and would have paperwork to fill out, plus I needed blood drawn, so I knew things would actually be easier without him. I was in a terrible mood when I was leaving. I knew it was better to leave him at home but I just didn't want to.
I took my wallet and keys and phone from the diaper bag, since I no longer needed to take a diaper bag with me. I was looking around for something to put it all in, and that's when I realized that I don't even have a purse.
I had almost 2 hours of time to myself. I've become used to having at least 1 kid with me, and usually I have all of them. When my husband gives me "time to myself" I always take Jaxon. So I'm still talking to him or interacting with him in some way. Of course, I was at the doctor, so I wasn't really by myself, but I felt very alone. Plus I do not like going to the doctor, and I especially hate seeing new doctors. This is actually the first time I've seen a new doctor without Jason since my diagnosis. In the past he was always able to come with me while the kids were in school (this is one of the major downfalls of homeschooling for me).
So yesterday, I had a quiet car ride that I didn't know what to do with - I kept looking into the rearview mirror to check on the baby that I hadn't even brought with me. When the nurse called me back, I stood up to walk back, then looked back thinking "I forgot something" because I wasn't carrying anything- no diaper bag, no baby.
It was very strange being out by myself. Jaxon survived. Actually, he was perfectly fine and never even missed me. Somehow, I survived too, but I have absolutely no idea how.
In the process of all of this, I realized that Jaxon is to an age where I can leave for short periods of time. I also realized that I had no idea where I'd want to go without him. When I think of places to go, I always think in terms of what the kids would enjoy or in terms of necessity (grocery shopping). I can't think of a single thing I want to do by myself. It made me realize that so much of who I am is tied up in being a wife and mother.
Part of me panicked when I realized this and I thought "Oh, no, I need to find a hobby. What am I going to do when the kids are all grown up?" Then I realized that I'm a long ways away from that time and that it's probably okay to be completely wrapped up in the kids right now.
Hopefully, I'm not the only one who doesn't know what to do when I'm all alone. When was the last time you were by yourself, without kids or husband? What did you do while you were alone?