*Mom, I know you'll be reading this, so please don't take offense.
Anyone who knows my mom, knows she goes above and beyond what most people would expect of her. She's generous, selfless, and seemingly numb to sacrifice. We're talking the I'll drive 7 hours on Monday to babysit while you go to dinner and drive 7 hours home on Tuesday kind of generous.
Sometimes I feel like I'm taking advantage of her willingness.
Sometimes I feel like I'm giving her the greatest gift, accepting that willingness.
Sometimes I feel like a neglectful parent, letting my 1.5 year old spend the night somewhere else for a week or so, and enjoying that time away from them.
Sometimes I feel like a confident parent, raising a perfectly secure 1.5 year old that can thrive under someone else's supervision for several nights.
We trust my parents, we trust Jude's parents. We know that when our children are with them, they are being treating with love and surrounded by safety and they honor our parental wishes (most of the time - chocolate before dinner? I don't want to know.). But for whatever reason, this internal dialogue is going on.
Maybe it's because I can often remember spending the week at my grandmother's house in the summer, but Jude never did. But, he lived in the same town as his and saw them often. Mine lived in other cities. Maybe it's because I don't know many friends who send their kids away overnight. Even my sister is hesitant to send her children to MS with my parents when they're coming for a visit. Maybe it's because I'm a well-adjusted product of parents that both worked and utilized daycares and babysitters, but now I'm a full-time mother responsible for the large majority of the caregiving.
It seems like my gut is saying, "It's fine. You love your children and are comfortable with the people they're staying with - what's the problem?" And my all-to-aware self-consciousness is saying, "But they don't do it, they don't do it. They're your kids - you should be taking care of them."
I don't really know what I'm looking for here - someone to affirm my gut or lists reasons why they agree with the opposite. Just typing it all out has already helped a little. But feel free to chime in on the discussion. I'll try not to worry too much about what everyone else is doing, although it sure would be nice to hear, "Oh, Alisha, you're not a terrible mother," from someone else besides my gut. Though, she's usually right...