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The NJP Blogs

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August 2012 Posts


Blog Entry

Flying the Coop...For Beginners

Tuesday, August 28th 2012 @ 4:42 PM

My 22-month-old daughter just had her first day in mishpachton (home daycare).  This wonderful opportunity literally dropped into our laps less than a week ago, and here we are sending our baby off to be in someone else's care when she has only ever been at home.  Do you sense the waterworks coming on?  Ha.  Not a chance.

I've always heard from so many friends and strangers that sending your child away to school/daycare/whatever is so difficult and so many people wind up crying their eyes out that their baby is so grown up.  But me?  Ever since we decided to send her I've been jumping out of my skin with excitement and waiting for it to happen already.

You have to understand, it's not that I don't love my child.  I love her to pieces.  I even missed her while she was gone.  But for the past two years I haven't had time to myself that was actually quiet - and definitely not so big a chunk as 5 hours.  Granted I am using the time to work and not to relax, but at the end of the day it really is relaxing to work in peace and quiet and with the knowledge that your child is being well cared for by a capable mother down the block.

Perhaps my lack of tears comes from the fact that this is just our first child and we will hopefully have many more opportunities to go through this.  Or perhaps it is the complete confidence I have in our chosen caretaker.  Perhaps it is even just a little bit of selfishness that finally I get this time for myself and my own work.  Perhaps.

I know that people say this all the time, but it really is incredibly important for parents to figure out a way to have time to themselves (even if it is just time to work by themselves).  Now that she is taken care of every morning, I can get all of my work and household matters taken care of while the toddler is off having a blast with a group of kids her age.  When she gets home, I'm all hers.  I can devote to her the attention that she needs and deserves.  I can be a better mother.

And if this thought makes me happy and puts a smile on my face and brings me great joy and excitement at sending away my firstborn child to her first structured care - well then, so be it.  She's growing up and I can't (and wouldn't want to) do anything to stop it.  I'll save the tears for something else.  :)



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