As stated in a previous post, I have found a daycare provider that I like. I've been taking Baby over there for the past few weeks just an hour or so at a time. I stay with her and we hang out so she can get used to the place and M (our provider). It also gives me a chance to see the interaction between M and the other kids, as well as get a feel of the overall place. So far, so good.
This past week I had planned on leaving Baby there without me for about an hour. One step at a time toward when I go back to work in August. I would go and do some shopping or something. I hadn't figured it out yet. Maybe a pedicure.
Well, my plans were foiled.
I received a phone call from my old principal asking me to come clean out my room (I am switching schools for the upcoming year). Luckily, I had cleared out a lot before I went on maternity leave, so there wasn't a huge amount to deal with. I had tried to go in with Baby to pack a few more things, but that was unsuccessful (Have you ever tried to pack with a baby? Not a simple task). I figured that since I had planned to leave Baby with daycare this week anyway, I would just leave her for a more extended amount of time and I could go work (I suppose that is the point of daycare- to go to work and not play).
M was happy to watch her so I prepped for Baby's first day. I made sure she had a sippy cup with milk (mine of course), her lovey (a taggie blankie made by a friend of mine that she likes to cuddle with for naps), a bib, change of clothes, her sunbonnet, and diapers. I also threw in one of her blankets (made by same friend as lovey) that she normally sleeps on so that she would have something that smelled like home. Hopefully that would help.
I fed her at home before we left then packed her up. I don't remember driving her over there, but I know I tried to be calm when I was dropping her off. I think I was shaking just a little bit and trying to take deep breaths so Baby wouldn't freak out (they sense these things, you know). It was only for a couple of hours and I was seriously nervous. I was really hoping she wouldn't cry the whole time (remember the bachelorette party? Disaster).
We got there and M opened the door to greet us. I gave her all of Baby's items and explained what I had packed in the diaper bag. I passed Baby off to M (who surprisingly did not cry, just looked at me with her big blue eyes like, "What's going on?"). I told Baby I would be back and to be a big girl. Then I walked out the door and went off to work. I tried to play some happy music on the way to work to get my mind off the fact that I was childless.
I packed and cleaned as fast as I could and hopefully I didn't forget anything. M texted me a few times to give me updates on how Baby was doing, and even sent me pictures of her laughing and smiling! I love this lady. That made me feel so much better, to know that Baby wasn't crying her head off. So much better, in fact, that after I packed I went home and unpacked (I had planned to get Baby right after, but I had so much that it overflowed into her carseat so it wouldn't have been possible). Then I decided to eat lunch at home (I had forgotten to take a lunch break while at work and I need to keep up my energy to make milk), and even surfed the internet while eating. I was actually starting to enjoy having time to myself! I was really surprised at my feelings, but it was nice. I contemplated cleaning the kitchen, but decided it was time to go get Baby. I had told M four hours at the most, and it was getting to be about that time.
I didn't tell M when I was coming and was a little nervous about what would greet me when I walked in the door. In my head I was picturing her holding a screaming Baby who could not be consoled. I couldn't have been more wrong.
I walked in and M and Baby were playing on the floor. M had laid out a blanket for her and she was happily chewing away at her lovey. I let her play for a few more minutes while M told me about her day, then I picked Baby up and fed her. I have to admit I wasn't a little disappointed that she didn't react to me right away. Perhaps a smile was too much to ask for? At least I know she felt so comfortable she didn't want to move. That's comforting, right?
M said she cried for about twenty minutes and then took a twenty minute nap. She refused to eat any milk, even out of her sippy cup, but that wasn't a big deal because she hadn't gone for too long without eating. Only about four hours. I hadn't thought she would eat (she's been doing pretty well about using the sippy cup and sipping from a real cup, but that's more play to her and not for sustenance. When she gets really hungry she just wants me). M said she took her outside and distracted her whenever she started to get fussy.
M said it went a lot better than she had hoped for as well (perhaps I may have over warned her about Baby's high maintenance personality?). I was really afraid that I would walk in and M would tell me she couldn't handle her and i would have to find another provider. Luckily that didn't happen. We agreed that I would drop Baby off again next week for a couple of hours again. One step at a time.