Pregnancy

Baby Blues: Spending Time Away From My Baby Makes Me Feel Healthier

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I look back and compare that to this moment. My daughter’s at daycare. My husband, who has the day off, is playing a video game in the other room while a jungle track plays quietly in the background. I’m typing, drinking coffee, taking my time. I have eight sweet hours to use however I like.

And I’ll have eight hours tomorrow, too. I just can’t believe how quickly I’ve adjusted to spending all of this time away from my daughter. And what’s crazier, and I wish there was a written form of a whisper because I’d be doing it right now, I wouldn’t mind having even a little more time away from her.

A few times, I’ve gone to pick her up and I’ve felt a sense of dread on the ride home. Now what? It was so nice not having to make all of her meals, clean everything up, change diapers, keep her entertained, tote her around in my arms to keep her from feeling ignored, count the hours until Shaun gets home. Suddenly, even when my husband’s at home to help, after I’ve spent my entire day in sweet solitude, I dread the remaining four or five hours of my day.

Maybe I’m so addicted to my isolation because I’m making up for lost time. Maybe my eight hours alone each day is the only antidote for that year and a half of being glued to my baby. Maybe the road to recovery from mama burnout is a long, long, long one.

Or maybe this is my depression talking, and I’m giving in to the illness by living in a bubble. I’m not just enjoying the separation from my daughter—I’m enjoying separation from the adults in my life, too. I rarely call good friends anymore. I rarely stop by to see family. It’s actually been a couple of months since I’ve seen my grandparents, who I used to visit (baby in tow) every Friday.

But I’m inclined to believe that, whether it germinates from a healthy place or not, alone time is exactly what I need right now. You may try to convince me otherwise, but as long as I don’t take up smoking again or start drinking martinis at noon, I don’t see any real harm in this whole reclusive thing.

(photo: ilterriorm / Shutterstock)

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