A ‘Whatever’ Weekend

When our respite sitter offered to stay with Clay overnight so my wife and I could get away, we said, “Wow.” Then we said, “We’ll have to think about that.”

To give this some perspective, the last time we were away together—just the two of us—was about nine years ago. Long enough that we aren’t exactly sure of the year. Long enough that we weren’t even thinking of the possibility of doing it again.

So, we thought about it.

We knew we had accumulated a good number of back hours—close to 26—so we could go away for one night. (Paying a sitter for that many hours was out of the question.) We also knew our anniversary was coming up. But how would Clay do with us away overnight for the first time in his memory? That weighed on our minds a bit. We completely trust our respite sitter, though, and Clay enjoys spending time with her.

Then we stopped thinking and made plans. And this past weekend my wife and I got to spend our anniversary together at the beach on a beautiful Indian Summer weekend.

Before leaving, we explained the plan to Clay and asked for his thoughts.

“have a good time mom and dad,” he typed on his keyboard.

Off we went, determined to live up to Clay’s comment. We called it our “whatever” weekend—no expectations, no pressure, no rigid schedules. Whatever.

My sister and brother-in-law generously offered their townhouse for our use – an amazing place where wall-to-wall windows look out on the bay, and the ocean is about a block away.

View from the Balcony

We arrived Saturday afternoon, after a two-hour drive. Following a quick lunch, we headed to the beach with my brother and his wife, who have a house nearby and came down to spend some time with us.

It was a tad too cold and windy for swimming, but my wife did get her feet wet.

Later we headed to dinner with my brother and sister-in-law, where the lamb chops presented quite a spectacle.

After dinner, before polishing off a bottle of wine together, we checked in with the sitter to find that Clay had been busier than us, going to his favorite restaurant, doing some food shopping, visiting one of his favorite parks. All good so far.

One of my wife’s favorite creatures are monarch butterflies. Amazingly, while walking to the beach the next morning, we discovered that thousands of them had stopped right where we were on their annual migration to Mexico. They were everywhere, as we walked past the beautiful gardens to the beach.

There were almost as many fishermen as butterflies, when we reached the ocean.
We ended our morning walk by working our way through the labyrinth at a nearby church.
A rabbit basking in the sun on the grassy perimeter seemed to have it all figured out, way ahead of us, and had no plans to leave.

After a quick lunch and a final visit with my brother and sister-in-law, the 26-hour honeymoon was over. We arrived home to find that Clay and the sitter were still out at the park. Busy, busy.

Clay typed a nice message for the sitter as she was leaving.

“Awesome to see you   thanks for coming over”

And then it came time to find out how he felt about his weekend.

“What did you think of having a weekend with Mom and Dad away?” my wife asked.

“so fun    more trips so we can go out with Stacy    she is so much fun”

I guess we have no choice but to figure out how to go away again. The little guy commands it.


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  1. #1 by autismmommytherapist on October 12, 2011 - 9:33 am

    So happy for you and your wife! My husband and I have managed to get away for at least one night every year, but we have a willing grandma. Getting that break helps so much. Hope you two get that respite again soon!

  2. #2 by colleen tarcza on October 12, 2011 - 11:12 am

    Aww. So glad you and Roe had some ‘couple time’ together. Loved your shots !! God bless..

  3. #3 by Loretta on October 12, 2011 - 12:47 pm

    What a much-needed break for all three of you! So glad you had such a wonderful experience to relax and recharge. Let me know when you can do a 3-day weekend 🙂

  4. #4 by Loretta on October 12, 2011 - 12:48 pm

    PS Happy Anniversary!

  5. #5 by Harold on October 12, 2011 - 4:12 pm

    Sounds like everyone enjoyed themselves —- happy anniversary.

  6. #6 by Jen McCary on October 13, 2011 - 12:02 pm

    That is great…. all the way around!!! I am glad you and Roe got to have a night away and happy for Clay that he got some time ‘alone’ as well! Glad he did well! Send my best to the family!

  7. #7 by Julianne on October 13, 2011 - 3:00 pm

    Yay! My parents are currently away for TWO WEEKS in honor of their 25th anniversary. My brother is a bit out of sorts, but according to the respite girls (who I’m calling daily), all in all he’s fine. Glad you and your wife were able to get away for some R&R. Goodness knows you parents deserve it!

  8. #8 by Mimi Coleman on October 21, 2011 - 12:46 pm

    thanks for sharing your story!
    I look forward to reading more as well!

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