Vacation without kids? Yep, that’s exactly what we did these past week and it was awesome.
So many of our parent friends told us, “you are so lucky” or “I wish I had the guts to do it” or “it just never seems like the right time” or “I would miss them too much” when we told them that we were planning to go away for a week on vacation sans our 2-year old child.
Taking a vacation without kids is possible. We had the time of our lives, and our little guy had a blast as well. The other winners in this scenario were our amazing parents (Jake’s grandparents) who got to spend some real quality time with him.
I realize we are very fortunate. Both sets of our parents are local (Long Island), are overjoyed to spend time with our son, and very hands-on with being his temporary caregivers. Jake spends a few hours almost every week with his grandparents so they know his moods, his schedule, what foods he likes, and how to entertain him. That made life very easy on us when heading out of town for vacation.
Did we miss our son? Absolutely. But, he was not the focus of all of our conversations. Quite the opposite. We enjoyed the photos via email and texts our “somewhat” digital age parents sent us to see what he was up to – riding the railroad, hitting local parks and playgrounds, at the animal farm, children’s museum, public library, the beach – that enabled us to be more comfortable enjoying our own company. I know some parents that use Skype as a way of being in touch as well.
Vacation without kids — totally necessary
We wanted (needed?) this vacation without kids. Sure, we have taken vacations with our son as well, but just like getting a babysitter frequently for date night, this vacation was for us – it was our anniversary. Some might call us selfish. I ‘mildly’ agree that taking a week of vacation without your child is a bit selfish. So what!
This vacation enabled us to have conversations that didn’t revolve around our son, to eat dinner late and linger at the restaurant without being on the clock, have a couple of extra drinks and not worry about being “on shift” in the morning, sleep late, and sit around reading a book (something I never get to do anymore). Most importantly, going away together and being spontaneous really helped us enjoy each others company in ways we did before we had a child.
So, stop making excuses. Find a creative way to go on a parents only vacation, even if only for a weekend, and enjoy all of that private time that you took for granted before you had kids. I am wondering if other parents who have taken a vacation without their children can share their tips on what you did with the kids so you can get out of dodge.