I am writing this in a hotel room, on my first business trip in approximately 21 months. It is not my first night away from the baby, because I traveled with my older three children twice over the past year. However, it is my first night away from everyone.
I feel like I’m rusty…driving to the airport, going through security. At least the airlines appear to have been preserving people’s frequent flyer status from before the pandemic, so I was upgraded, which was nice. A glass of wine on a plane. And reading on a plane! With no one needing anything. I switched seats so a couple could sit together and they held hands through the whole flight. I didn’t need to sit next to anyone, so I had that flexibility.
I also did not need to tell anyone it was time to go to bed — something I have also done every night for the last 21 months. Sadly, I did not sleep as well in my hotel room as I could have. But I did wake up on my own (a few minutes before my alarm) rather than to someone calling “Mama!” I will get there eventually in my normal life too I am sure but it is also intriguingly different to start the day with a cup of coffee and a blog post rather than the school runs.
We shall see what life looks like in another year or two. I am not speaking this week (the work trip is something else) but that’s normally why I travel. I had built up my speaking business to a good place in the three years after my TED talk. I traveled to talk somewhere most weeks between March-June and Sept-October (peak conference season). Covid obviously changed that. I have been doing a lot of virtual speaking, which I like, but it’s got a different rhythm. It has been lovely not to have the same logistical pressure of figuring out overnight care and pumping and such. Pumping this morning reminded me of that! But there is something to be said for leaving normal life for a night or two occasionally. Hopefully there will be a good balance in the future…
5 thoughts on “Thoughts on the first night solo…”
Both of my kids moved out this summer (son in May and daughter in August). It has been odd to have a house without anyone but my husband and the cat 🙂 Because even though they were older, we spent so much time together this past year that it reminded me a bit of the days when they were younger (though better because I didn’t really have to do anything for them).
I’m also waiting for the speaking side of my career to rebound… although I agree, it’s nice to do the virtual gigs and not worry about all the logistics! I did my first talk in ages in August and felt that same sense of rustiness plus excitement. Here’s to bigger speaking seasons to come!
@Michelle – congrats on your first in-person speech! I know it will all come back and be more of a mix than in the past. As always, it is a reminder that it is never a good idea to have all your eggs in one basket as a business. I’m glad I had book writing and podcasting going on as well in 2020 in particular…
I’ve kind of been dreaming/fantasizing about spending a night in a hotel. I might get a hotel room when our son is weaned/breastfeeding less. It would be nice to wake up when I want to, not when he’s crying. And I also would appreciate not waking up during the night and thinking, “was that someone crying?” Our 3.5yo has been having bad dreams and cries for us when that happens and I”m usually the one that hears him/attends to him, so I don’t feel like I sleep all that “deeply” even when the baby isn’t waking me. I probably won’t sleep as well as I’d like to, but a break from being a parent sounds really nice right now! Hope your first biz trips goes well!
@Lisa – I didn’t sleep that great on night one but night two was amazing!