Over the November long weekend we took a wonderful 4 day trip to Tofino—without Zayden! Some of our friends were shocked, others were envious, but most admitted that they didn’t think they could do the same thing. I am the first to admit that leaving my baby for that long was hard, but I honestly feel like it was necessary. The first year of parenting is full of indescribable joys, but it is also exhausting and stressful, and like so many new parents, Justin and I were so busy being mom and dad that we often forgot that we were also husband and wife. A few days away was just what we needed to reconnect and to catch up on much needed sleep and downtime.
Being a teacher, my only vacation days come in the midst of peak season, so maternity leave was my one and only opportunity to take advantage of some off-season discounts. We rented a beautiful one bedroom condo by the beach just outside Tofino where we could relax in front of the fire, share a bottle of wine and read a book or two all without fear of interruption. We ate out at nice restaurants without worrying if they had high chairs or kid-friendly items on the menu, and we didn’t have to rush through our meals in order to get home for nap time. We took long walks along rain forest trails without worrying about stroller access. We enjoyed adult conversation about politics and work and life goals instead of a play-by-play of Zayden’s day.
Yes, we missed Zayden. We missed him a lot, in fact. We even talked about coming back to Tofino when he was a bit older and would be more interested (and physically able) to explore the beaches and the forests of the beautiful coastal town. But we also knew he was being well cared for by my mother who was absolutely thrilled to enjoy so much quality time with her grandchild. He was in good hands, so we allowed ourselves to miss him a little, but didn’t allow ourselves to worry. Instead we tried to focus on having a good time, and we certainly did.
We came home refreshed and reconnected. While we may not have the time or resources to do this every year, our baby-free getaway to Tofino convinced us of the importance of prioritizing our relationship in the midst of our often chaotic lives as parents. Getting away for a few days, just the two of us, is going to be something we do often as our kids grow up.
What are some of your favourite romantic getaway spots? How else do you reconnect when the rest of your life gets hectic?