Sending them to grandmother's house... and beyond.
Now that my eldest is eight, my mother reminded me that next year he'll be old enough for his "9 year old Yaya trip." The idea being that my mother (yaya) and he would plan and take a trip together - a special place they agree on. It's a brilliant idea, really, that my mother gleaned from another friend of hers who is especially well versed in the art of grandparenting.
But wait... nobody asked me if *I* was ready. And wouldn't he get home-sick? Or at least family-sick? He's not been apart from us for more than a single night. Even then, he wasn't very far away (a short drive at the most!) My mother is also not local (although she's an extremely frequent visitor). I'm not sure if she is ready to host a journey solo with my eldest. They spend some time together but there's the awkward situation she would be put in if this trip were to happen. The awkward situation of her being the parental figure, if necessary.
There are two thoughts that keep nagging at me. First, I really don't want to burden her with my child. I know that sounds silly. After all, she's had lots of parental experience (and success - I hope!). I just feel like as a grandparent, she'd want to be more liberal in their relationship than a parent and child would be. So would she just assume the parental figure if things come down to that? Second, they haven't spent all that much time together. In the past, their personalities have gone head to head a few times. I have to admit, my eldest can challenge the limits of even the most patient types!
So I think that maybe we will wait. Until he is 10, perhaps, or 11. That way the experience will be a better one for both of them. The experience that my mother envisions them having. A growing and bonding time together that they will remember for their whole lives. Have any of you sent your children off with grandparents for grand adventures? Have you had any great successes (or great disasters) in trusting both your parents and children to go off on their adventures? Any advice you may have about making trips like this work is welcome!