Hi, my name is Mary, and for whatever reason, I experience a major case of separation anxiety every time I have to leave my 7-year-old son for more than 24 hours or so.
I really don't know what my problem is, but the minute it's time for me to say goodbye to him and leave him for a few days -- I honestly start to miss him so much, it hurts. And considering I'm about to take off tomorrow night and go hang out with my college girlfriends for a long weekend, the panic in my gut is starting to set in.
Even though I'll probably be fine as soon as I arrive at my destination, it still makes me sick to my stomach simply thinking about leaving him.
Here's the weird thing -- I wasn't always like this. When he was a baby, toddler, and even a preschooler -- I could easily skip town for a few days and welcome the down time and relaxation with open arms. But now? Before I walk out the door, I give him "just one more" hug and kiss about 10 times, and then as soon as I pull out of the driveway, the sense of guilt overwhelms me. (Seriously, people -- I need help.)
And it's not like my little dude isn't well taken care of when I'm away. He's with either my husband or my parents, so he's still getting plenty of love and attention in my absence. Oh, and another thing -- he's totally cool with me being out of town. Sure, he misses me to a certain extent, but there is no crying, no whimpering, no "where's my Mommy?!?" sorts of fits going on.
Nope, the separation issue definitely lies with me and me alone -- and I'm really not sure where it's coming from all of a sudden. I mean, shouldn't it be easier for me to leave my kid now that he's older and more independent?
And if I'm having a tough time being away from him at 7 years old, is it going to keep getting worse as he gets older? Or at some point, will I finally take a chill pill and learn to love having time for myself away from my kid again? I sure hope so. I'd really hate to make a huge scene and embarrass the hell out of him when he's a teenager.
Do you have a tough time leaving your kids?
Image via Mary Fischer