Guest Post: Going-to-Daycare Blues

Photography by Michael Alberstat

It ruined my long weekend.

I got the call on Friday. It came mid-afternoon at a family cottage, my son fast asleep after a morning of play on the beach—he’d been accepted into our daycare of choice, and two months earlier than expected. Rationally, I know this is a good thing. But mentally, I’m not prepared to send him out into the real world. Everyone tells you, “you’ll never be ready for this”, and they’re right. Childcare has been the hardest hurdle for me as a new parent. It weighed on me after my son was born—infant rooms were in short supply, a home-care situation never arose and I couldn’t wrap my brain around the legwork involved in finding a nanny. So, I put him on a few wait lists for daycares that would take him at 18 months, and turned to the grandparents who agreed to share childcare duties for six months. It has been beyond perfect.

Emotionally, I have been able to adjust to the initial separation, and our parents have been able to bond with him knowing this is a temporary situation (they like their freedom and they are getting older). But all weekend, neither my husband nor I could look at our son the same. I kept thinking, ‘But he can’t walk!’ ‘He can’t feed himself.’ ‘Who will cuddle him when he’s sad?’ It has brought back all the initial sadness I had about leaving him just a few months ago. Maybe I will get over this, but right now even that seems a bit sad.

Anyone out there have any transition tips?

—Jacquelyn Francis, executive editor of FASHION magazine

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