We took a road trip to Santa Fe this past weekend. It was a 6 hour drive from here which wasn’t so bad. We left when Brian got home from work around 4pm so Lachlan would sleep most of the way because bedtime is at 7 anyway. And he did great in the car, however, he had other plans once we got to our hotel. He was wide awake and excited to crawl around in a new place, and when it came time for real bedtime, he flipped his shit.
Lesson 1: Do not leave for a trip at night
He absolutely hated being in his pack n play (mind you, he slept amazingly in it 3 months prior on our week long trip to NJ). But this time, he decided that it was worse than being in the seventh ring of hell so he let us and everyone in the rooms around us know about it. We tried everything to calm him down, the usual bottle, bouncing, coming into the bed with us. But he only pushed us away and continued wailing. It was awful, and my stomach was hurting hearing him like that. He was never one to snuggle. For the first time in his life he was completely inconsolable! We slept maybe 3 hours that night, which was worse than the sleep we got when he was a newborn. It was brutal. We got up the next morning and zombie shuffled to the breakfast buffet where the attendants fawned over him and gave him toys and he smiled and laughed and ate scrambled eggs as if he didn’t just completely rain hell fire down on us just hours before.
We somehow managed to stay awake long enough to make it through the Turquoise Trail drive which was lots of fun. We did at one point, pull off the road for a ten minute nap while Lachlan was napping in the back seat.
Lesson 2: Taking random roadside naps in public may feel weird, but they can be efficient
Then we went through what was once an old ghost town, but has now been revamped into cute little shopp-ees with turquoise jewelry, handmade ceramics and art, and restaurants. It was fun…for us. Lachlan, however, seemed to be holding a grudge or something… like he woke up on the wrong side of the crib for some reason:
Later that night we headed back to the hotel, ordered pizza and mentally prepared for bedtime. We debated leaving that night if he was still as inconsolable as the night before, but we decided to stick it out one more night. It wasn’t any money lost because Brian had Marriott rewards points he put towards the room. Once again, Lach flipped his shit, but this time we let him cry it out and he stopped on his own 20 minutes later. Not bad! But then an hour late he woke up and screamed again and we were ready for a repeat of the other night, but we left him alone and he went back to sleep straight through until 6am. Win!
Lesson 3: Try very hard to stay out of sight from the baby once they are in bed. I think part of the reason he cried so much was because he could SEE us in the room no matter where we put the pack n play even with the lights off. But also, don’t let your baby sleep on a bed of nails because that’s what Lachlan thought he was sleeping on apparently.
The next day we felt like brand new people. It’s amazing what a full night’s sleep can do for you. Anyway, that day we hung out in downtown Santa Fe, walked all around, got lunch.
Afterwards, we decided to head back to the hotel to pack our things, check out, and see the cave dwellings at the Bandelier National Monument. We would leave for home right after.
So in the end, we only left a half a day earlier than planned. Being spontaneous and making shit up as you go is one of the things I have gotten more and more used to since having a kid. These tiny dictators own you and your ‘vacation’ plans.