Yesterday was George’s first whole day at daycare – I can’t believe it, he’s so grown up now! He’s had two settling in sessions last week of a couple of hours at a time but this was his first full day there. It was an emotional roller coaster of a day so I thought I’d share this experience with all of you.
Choosing a Daycare Provider
We found a wonderful nursery in our town full of loads of toys, lovely staff and safe areas to play. They divide the children in to age groups so George will be in with others from 3 months to 2 years but they look after children up to the age of 5. All the staff that work there are so kind and from the start when we visited to take a look around I knew that they would take care of George and I would be comfortable leaving him with them. We get a little book that the staff write in so we know what his day has been like which is really helpful for a routine based parent like myself.
We dropped George off at 8.30am so he was there in time for breakfast. We popped his backpack on his peg and handed him over to his lovely key worker who took him off to play. It seems as though it’s easier not to draw out the goodbye and just slip out while he’s playing. After the disastrous first settling in session I was really nervous to leave him for a full day. Would he nap? Would he drink all his milk? Would other children want to play with him? They said I could ring whenever I wanted to see how he was getting on but I didn’t want to be a nuisance so I decided I was only going to ring once.
During the Day
I had 8 hours to fill before it was time to pick George up again. I’d booked the day off as I wanted to be able to drop him off and pick him up at least once. You may think that I enjoyed a whole day on the sofa, took an afternoon nap, read a book or wrote some blog posts – you’d be wrong. I spent 90% of that time cleaning the house purely because I knew no-one could get in my way. I managed to catch a couple of episodes of Waterloo Road (yes, I am that cool) and enjoy a hot cup of tea but that was about all the relaxing I did. It feels good to be back on top of the housework – sometimes I just need a few hours to blast through everything. I do wish I’d stopped for an afternoon nap though; by 4 o’clock I was ready for bed.
I gave the daycare a ring just before they were due to serve lunch, just to check in and I was told that George was having a wonderful day and that he’d had a really good morning nap. The sense of relief after hearing this was indescribable. He must have been comfortable to have gone down for a nap and I was just glad that they were enjoying having him there.
I met Charlie after work so we could go and get George together. It had been a day of heavy rain and we’d parked the buggy in a leaky spot under the canopy apparently – oops! We went in and George was brought over to us. To be honest, he didn’t seem that bothered to see us at first – I think that he’d have been quite happy to stay there for another couple of hours! He had been such a good boy all day and we were told about how he’d loved dancing to music and playing with blocks. He’d drank most of his milk feeds and eaten all of his lunch. They even managed a little afternoon nap so his routine was still mostly on track which is always a plus for me. They really loved having him and had been cooing over him all day and had been getting cuddles from him – he knows how to work people!
I know that this is going to do so much good for him both socially and developmentally. He’s going to be going every Friday for the whole day – hopefully by some miracle one day we’ll be able to put him in for another day just so it’s not such a big gap between visits. When did your little one go to daycare? How did you find the experience as a parent? I’d love to hear your stories.