This is not the first time I’ve used this blog to ramble like a crazy mom, and it won’t be the last. So, all day I’ve been working on a post in my head which is cheerful and sentimental. That one will come, but I need to just write about my breaking heart for a second. I am in a state of panic. Frozen, petrified panic when it comes to this search for childcare. I feel like I haven’t let it get me too down this week but tonight, for some reason, it just snuck up behind me and tapped me on my shoulder.
There’s a lot to think about. I would prefer to find a place that I can send both children to so that I don’t have to factor in two drop-offs/pick-ups. I think I’d prefer a small center setting because I think Liam would like lots of kids and lots of choices for activities. There aren’t a whole lot of centers that take infants around here it turns out. If I did choose to have 2 separate places for Nora and Liam I have an acquaintance with an in-home daycare that I’d be happy to send Nora to and then Liam could attend a nursery school that takes 2 year olds. Turns out tapping into the nursery school scene around here is like trying to get into the hottest restaurant in New York City. The wait lists and amount of times I’ve heard that a school only has 1-2 spots left is adding to the anxiety build up.
I’m not sure what set me off tonight. I know that I was looking at a website for a local childcare center that some moms of new babies Nora’s age are using. It looked like a highly respectable center, very professional, lots of learning and play…a great spot. Then I started thinking about how Liam wouldn’t know anyone there. OF COURSE I KNOW HE’LL MEET THEM AND GET USED TO THEM AND MAYBE EVEN MAKE A FRIEND OR TWO. THIS WOULDN’T BE MOMMY CRAZY RANTING IF I LET LOGIC RULE MY EMOTIONS. But my heart is breaking for the fact that he’s known his friends for more than half of his life. He talks about his guides every day. We sing a good night song and include every single child in his classroom to bid sweet dreams. They’ve learned how to be some of the most caring buddies that I’ve ever seen a group of two year olds to be. There’s not one single little friend in that classroom that he doesn’t adore and think of as family in his little brain and big heart. And just like that poof everyone is forced to scatter about. And it particularly breaks my heart because other parents have reacted in a much less wishy-washy manner than myself this week and many of them were able to get the 1-2 open spots at certain schools, or had even been so prepared as to put their child on a waiting list when they were born (what is wrong with me that I didn’t do that??). So, many of the toddlers will be transitioning with a friend. And Liam’s not. Ok, now I’m having a hard time seeing the screen because I’ve gone from misty eyed to full-on ugly cry. Pardon any typos.
How does a 2 year old understand that they don’t get to be greeted in the morning by Miss Alex and Miss Erin? He will have to get to know new teachers and it’ll take time before he’s comfortable with someone peeling him from mommy’s leg and giving him snuggles on the way to circle time. (They WILL give him snuggles, right??) Is he going to have abandonment and attachment issues because he won’t be greeted by Eve, Jayden, and Julian at the door? NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO TELL ME THAT HE WON’T REMEMBER ANY OF IT BECAUSE HE IS TWO AND IF YOU ASKED ME SOMETHING ABOUT WHEN I WAS TWO I WOULDN’T BE ABLE TO TELL YOU. I care about how he’s feeling NOW. How it affects him NOW. I worry that he’ll have trouble sleeping or react with negative behavior NOW. And I worry he’ll miss his friends and that he’ll somehow think it’s his fault he has to go to an unfamiliar place with unfamiliar people.
And the last thing I’m going to cry about tonight is that I’m scared. I’m scared I’ll make a hasty decision because I don’t have very much time. I’m scared I’ll choose someplace that will squash his spirit. He is such an amazing little boy with so much energy and soul and love and gifts and I want everyone who’s around him to recognize this all as positive. I want them to laugh loudly when he’s screaming at a deafening level, playing his air guitar and flailing his body around to his own music. I want them to see him exploring something and help him understand more about it, because he’s a sponge just waiting to listen to every syllable out of your mouth and repeat as much of it back. I want them to let him run around like a hyena when he needs to move his body and not make him try to sit still. I want them to hug him if he needs a hug; even if he has poor behavior I address the behavior and then hug him to let him know I love him even if I don’t love his behavior. I hate that new people will have to decipher his two year old language. That they may not understand what he’s trying to communicate to them because it takes serious background knowledge to understand an inkling of what a two year old is saying. I don’t want his needs dismissed by someone with a passive, “Ooohhh…okay,” when they don’t understand him say he wants “ghee.” Everyone who’s anyone in his life knows that ghee are those potato chip-style veggie sticks. Ghee was one of his first words and I’m fairly positive it came from the ending of veg-GIE [sticks]. (Pronounced with a hard g like “get,” instead of a soft g like “gee.”)
What if I mess up as his mom, as the person who is in charge of finding this for him? This fear of failing him is the cocktail coursing through my veins causing complete body shut-down.