You've given birth to your beautiful baby, they are thriving, and you are mastering this whole motherhood gig. Now you're starting to feel the need to escape for a little bit of adult time—not to mention your partner is anxious to have a bit of time where they've got you all to themselves!
It's time to start thinking about planning a night out on the town, just the adults! The mere thought of it fills you with joy, excitement, and sheer panic. Can you leave your little one? Will they be ok without you? Will the babysitter know what to do when they cry? Of course your little one will be ok, but it is still a big milestone for parents to achieve. Here are 10 tips to surviving your first night out after having a baby.
10 Have A Family Member Or Close Friend Babysit
The best way to have some peace of mind when you leave your baby for the first time is to have a family member or a close friend babysit them while you are out. This way, you have full trust in the person and they likely know your little one better than anyone.
If possible, enlist the help of grandparents or relatives for this special first night out. If that's not feasible, then ask a close friend if they might be willing to watch your baby for a couple of hours so that you can have a much-needed break.
9 Don't Go Out For Very Long—Keep It Simple
Regardless of how ready you are for this break, you will likely find that once you are out, you are missing your baby and wanting to get back to them. It's the pull of motherhood—you only escape to a certain point! You will be wanting to get home and check on them and cuddle them before very long.
Keep your first night out fairly simple. Plan a dinner at a local restaurant with your partner, or meet up with some girlfriends for coffee and a chat. Stay relatively close to home so you have comfort in knowing that, should the need arise, you can jet home if you need to. Chances are everything will be absolutely fine, but being close to home will just give you that little peace of mind you may need for this first venture out.
8 Plan An Afternoon Or Evening Outing
Some couples get a bit over-zealous when it comes time to plan a getaway for the first time since their baby was born, and they end up planning a night or two away. While the idea of sleeping through the night uninterrupted, waking when you're ready, and enjoying some room service breakfast sounds idyllic, you may end up feeling worried the whole time and missing your baby.
For the first night out after your baby is born, plan for a simple afternoon or evening outing where you're only gone for a few hours. Save the overnighters for when you're a little more comfortable and used to leaving your baby for longer periods of time. Say, when they are 10-years old or so. Just kidding!
7 Have A Plan For The Babysitter
Whatever might be worrying you about leaving your baby, address those concerns and have a plan for the babysitter should they need to get in touch with you. If your baby tends to be a bit colicky, for instance, let the babysitter know what works well and how they can help to settle your baby should they have an issue.
Let the babysitter know how to reach you, where you will be, and roughly what time you anticipate being home. Being organized and having a plan will do wonders to help quell any worries you might have. You will know that there is a good plan in place, everything is taken care of, and Momma can relax!
6 Check In Once & Trust That All Is Well
Plan to check in once with your babysitter to make sure everything is ok and to give yourself peace of mind. Then, let it go and try to enjoy yourself. If you're constantly checking in at home, you're conveying the message that you don't have faith in your babysitter's ability to handle a baby. If your sitter is a family member, that's not likely to sit well with them.
Give them a call around the time your little one is usually in bed and see how the evening went. Other than that, try to trust the old adage that "no news is good news." If they're not contacting you, trust that all is well.
5 Prepare Yourself For The Emotions—They're Normal!
The range of emotions you will likely experience on your first night out after having your baby will make your pregnancy-hormone-induced mood swings look like a walk in the park. You will likely be pumped while you're getting ready, listening to some snappy music, and getting yourself all dolled up and ready to go!
Descending the stairs, about to leave, you see your sweet baby in the arms of someone else (a perfectly capable babysitter, but still) and that lighthearted mood will vanish, replaced with panic. You will recover from that and head out for your evening. The panic will ebb and flow throughout the evening, perhaps even causing tears at some point. Relax—it's all normal. You love your baby, and this is a big step for everyone. Be kind to yourself and trust that it is all normal.
4 Choose A Time When Baby Is Feeling Well
This is another reason why you should keep things simple for that first night out. Don't go booking a night at a fancy hotel quite yet—keep it simple and local. That way, should baby come down with a cold, you can reschedule for another time.
You will have a hard time relaxing if you know that your baby is sick at home. Plan your outing for when your baby is happy and healthy and not fighting any colds. This will help you to enjoy yourself more, and you will feel more relaxed knowing that your little one is doing okay.
3 Have A Drink—Really, It's Okay!
Even if you're breastfeeding your baby, have a glass of wine on your night out. You can always pump and dump, if you're worried about transferring the alcohol through to your baby. But having a drink while out for your first night since the baby was born will help to relax you and make you feel more at ease.
Besides, you've earned it! You've carried and birthed this beautiful baby, you've been up throughout the nights caring for your little one and giving them all the love and attention they deserve. It's been a busy time for you, and you deserve to have some time to unwind and have a little fun. So when the waiter asks you what you'd like to drink, don't feel any guilt in ordering yourself that glass of wine. Cheers!
2 Even If You're Dressing Nice, Dress Comfortably
Most women experience quite a change in their body after having a baby, and it tends to take quite a while for their bodies to return to their former selves. It is unlikely you will be squeezing back into your pre-pregnancy jeans anytime soon. Give yourself time before expecting your body to be back to normal—it has been through a lot!
Even if you're planning on dressing up nicer than your usual yoga pants and t-shirts, be sure to dress comfortably. Dressing in tight, uncomfortable clothing will only add to your feelings of uneasiness. Put on something that is comfortable and loose-fitting—your post-pregnancy body will thank you.
1 Try To Enjoy Yourself!
This is your first night out since your precious baby was born, and you will experience a wide range of emotions as you navigate this. More than anything though, try to enjoy yourself and enjoy being you again. Tap into your pre-baby identity, enjoy some time with your partner or friends, and trust that your baby will be just fine.
It is important that couples spend some time reconnecting with each other, especially in these early crazy days of parenthood. You will feel stronger and more united, which, in the long run, will help you to tackle all of the stresses of parenthood together. Your baby will be just fine, and they won't even remember you being gone. Go enjoy yourself!