My wife & I met on vacation over ten years ago. Naturally, we enjoy taking vacations together as do most people. We have been making sure that we take one nice vacation every year ever since we met. Now, with a little one, things are slightly different. Consequently, We take two summer vacations – one vacation together as a family (3 of us) & one vacation without our three-year old son (our couples vacation).
The first two years, I didn’t mind leaving the little guy behind with our parents for a week because he wasn’t as expressive as he is now. It almost felt like he didn’t really know or understand that we were away. Fortunately, our son spends a lot of time with his grandparents during the year so they know what he likes and do a wonderful Job of caring for him.
The quandary: When is the right time to tell your toddler that you are going away on a trip WITHOUT them? Of course, I wouldn’t put it in those words to him – I would make a big deal about him going to Nana/Grandma “camp” for a few days and describe all of the fun things that they have lined up for him – beach, pool, Bounce House, children’s museum, etc.
I am treading on uncharted territory here because I am rarely separated from my little guy for more than a day – now, we are skipping town for six days. Do you tell them way in advance? Is the morning of our trip the right time – that feels unfair, but I also don;t want him to have anxiety about it. Maybe he won’t have anxiety if we phrase it properly. I am “green” on this topic & Would appreciate any suggestions or advice?
As an aside: Don’t get me wrong – internal thinking (I am doing backflips in my head) with all of the excitement about the prospect of going away on an awesome vacation with my lovely bride! Hopefully, I am overanalyzing things and our son will be even more excited about his break from us! Wishful thinking?