Babies, Toddlers, family, life, love, motherhood, parenting, surviving motherhood, teacher mom, toddlerhood

Can you just stay at daycare?

This one is hard for me to write. I had to write it now because a few months from now it will sting too much. We are in the last few months of daycare and most of her friends are already gone. They all started together about 4 years ago. Juliana started there at 9 weeks old and as much as that check is hard to write every month, especially with 2 kids, I don’t want her to leave. It almost feels like that feeling when you leave the hospital after having them- stepping out into the real world of chaos. The minute Jules leaves daycare, the reality of chaos and society sets in.

It’s so hard sending your babies to daycare. I remember crying and sobbing never wanting to let her out of my sight. They will essentially know your kids more than you know them. They get to see their first laugh, roll over, walk, etc. You trust these people with every part of you. They spend more time with your kids than you do. And don’t even get me started about American maternity leave. It’s horrendous. But if we have to do it, then we better freakin find a daycare who will love our kids almost as much as we do.

Ms. Tara, Ms. Melissa, and Ms. Patti,

You have loved our kids like they are your own. You have opened your hearts and these little babies who are now going off into the real world (yes it’s that serious), know how much you love them. It means the world being able to send your kids to people you can trust. It means the world when you see your kids so excited to go to daycare.

I remember almost 4 years ago, the four of us (Ms. Tara, me, Daddy and Jules) began a journey with you that I can’t believe is already over. Those first few weeks were difficult, as they are for all new parents going back to work. I remember praying I pumped enough milk for the next day. I remember Howie and I both worried about Jules all hours we were away from her – Is he eating? Is she sleeping? Is she safe? I remember asking you everyday after work- did she eat okay? Did she talk at all? Did she roll over? Did she do anything cute?

Now, 4 years later, Juliana is a fun-loving, sassy, kind-hearted and happy leader. She loves daycare and loves her friends. She tells me almost everyday that she’s not ready to leave. She’s not ready for preschool at the “big school.” She feels safe there. She feels happy there. She naps there. She grew up there. And that’s all I ever wanted. Now she has to leave.

How ironic that we’ve come full circle- I was sobbing on my bathroom floor holding her tight, half naked while she was nursing begging God that she wouldn’t be mad at me for leaving her with some “stranger” at daycare. Now I want to keep her there, safe from the chaos in the real world. Safe from the kids at school that will tell her Santa isn’t real. Safe from the kids who will make her question her character. Safe from the bullies who will attack her heart and make her cry. Safe from all the swears that kids use as their first language.

The thing is, the minute they step foot in school, time is swallowed up. God, they weren’t lying when they said they grow up too fast.

It’s so hard for a 4 year old to understand the depth of a mama’s heart, the concept of time, and the fact that she will never be going back to Ms. Tara‘s house for school. What she does know is how much all the teachers love her and her brother. She also knows she created amazing friendships there. She loves her best friends; the graduating group has made such an impact on her heart. Oh, the places they’ll go.

Thank you Ms. Tara, Ms. Melissa, and Ms. Patti for loving my children like they are your own and putting my heart at ease. You are angels.

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