Thursday, May 28, 2009

Barcelona trip without Astrid

U. and I decided to fly to Barcelona for his birthday today. We will be back in 6 days, and with such a short international trip we decided it best if we made the journey just us 2 adults without Astrid. A second honeymoon of sorts.

This is only the 2nd international trip we've taken without Astrid. The first time was to Amsterdam in December 2008 when Astrid was 3 years old, and only for a few days. She had already accompanied us to Europe including Amsterdam just a couple months previous in October 2008, so she wasn't missing anything. This time the trip will be little longer with us being gone for 6 days. It feels so strange to not have her with us (as I'm sitting in the airport lounge typing this). Last night she stayed at her nanny's house since we had pack and leave the house by 5 AM - and I kept catching myself "listening" for her. To hear her if she woke up. Habit I guess.

Astrid begged to go on vacation with us. The plane, the food, the adventure - Astrid inherited our wanderlust and love of travel. I would love to take her but not this time. Mama and Papa need some alone time too. "Next time I'll go on vacation with you," Astrid declared.

Astrid will be staying with her nanny Beate and her family - which includes 2 kids that Astrid adores. She told me on the drive home from school yesterday, "I love Claire and Noah." She was so excited to "sleep over" at their place and get to see them and play with them for days in a row. In fact when I dropped her off last night she immediately ran upstairs with Noah, leaving me behind. I had to call up to her and ask her to come down to give me a hug reminding her that she won't see me for awhile. Her response was classic kid, "I know!" Quick hug and kiss and off she was running again to play with the kids.

The days preceding our flight I was giving Astrid more hugs and kisses and feeling that gnawing feeling in my gut - already missing my baby. She's been sleeping in our bed recently and both U. and I did not fight it - in fact welcoming it just so we could be close to her and hold her all night. I'd also been preparing her with lots of conversation about being away but we'd always be thinking about her and when we would be coming home and the situation with her staying with her nanny, etc. Also told her when we got home she'd get a surprise (hoping to find a Spanish doll for her). Also that both her Papa and I loved her so much and she's always on our mind.

Yesterday evening as I was finishing up in the office, Astrid sat on the floor of my office and colored and enjoyed listening to my music playing on the iPod. I e-mailed U. and told him how much I would miss her and what a good little girl she is. He told me he felt the same way and felt guilty about leaving her. I marveled at how much we love our little one that it kills us to be apart from her, even though we know she's in good hands and will be having a great time. Her nanny has all sorts of activities planned including going to the beach, and we'll Skype so we can talk to Astrid and see her on the webcam.

But I still miss her and would love to hold her right now and look into her smiling face and kiss her sweet cheeks.

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