Today is The Parasite's last day in the toddler room at her daycare. When I went back to work a couple of days after her first birthday she was in a home daycare with a loving mom who had a son the same age. It was a great arrangement for that first year, but it became pretty clear she needed a little more stimulation so we moved her to the centre she's at now.
Three very caring women tend to her all day, singing her songs and teaching her about sharing and life outside her own home. A few times I have picked her up to find that Bing, one of the teachers, has played with her hair and put it into adorable designs. She won't sit still long enough for me to do that. At first I was really jealous. What the hell? Another female is grooming my monkey! But then I realized that it means that while I am off at work all day, there's another woman who cares for her, and kisses her booboos and puts her in time out for throwing things. I trust other women to look after the most precious thing I have, and the care and dedication they show doing their job allows me to go off every day and do mine.
She's going to be the baby in the room, kids older and bigger than her are going to snatch her toys and possibly knock her down in the scramble to get where they're going. She's a tough little cookie and I have no doubt that she'll assert herself just fine. She is her mother's daughter, after all. There will be a pecking order, she'll have new teachers, new women to tend to her, guide her, shape her sponge-like little mind. More structure, more learning, but still a lot of playtime and general tomfoolery.
Sure, it may not seem like a big deal to YOU, but to me it's the first of many milestones reminding me she's not a baby anymore. First the preschool room, then the first day of school, junior high, high school. Next thing I know, she's going to be off to university. It's such a cliche, I know, but it really does go too fast. Luckily I have a follow up with the fertility specialist later this month, so hopefully we can do it all over again soon!
I know exactly how you feel. My son went off to kindergarten this year and it almost broke my heart to have him go. I don't want him to grow up, but I can't stop it. I quit my job when I had my first baby, and except for on Friday's when we can't pay all the bills we need to be paying and we struggle do I regret our decision to stay home. I simply couldn't bring myself to let someone else experience my baby's milestones. I should have went back to work long ago and placed trust in someone else. But I didn't. I give you a lot of credit for continuing to work. I can't fathom how hectic your life must be. There are some days when I would have followed the path you chose and kept my job. Then there are others when I am glad I sacrificed my career for them. Great post as always.
New milestones are so exciting and sometimes a little adventurous. I hope your little one does well and these teachers are just as loving!!
@Kathy, thank you. I think we all know in our hearts what will work for our family. We have a year of Mat Leave here in the Great White North so I got to try SAHM on for size, and knew it wasn't for me. It's hectic, but we thrive on that around here.
@Jenn, thanks! So far, so good. She's a little sad but she's adapting. I give her a week before she's right into her new routine.
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