So, we have concluded that trading work days is not going to work this fall when we both are teaching, both on the market, and I’m trying to finish up the dissertation.

Part-time daycare is necessary.

I have tours and interviews at two separate places tomorrow. I know the child/adult for babies ratio is 2:1, and 3:1.

So far, my questions include:

1) Can they handle cloth diapers?

2) How to handle food?

Any advice?

Daycare is not the end of the world. In fact, I have the fondest memories of mine. Seriously, the smell of the industrial cleaner used in their bathrooms is comforting to me. And I have an undying love for yellow Dun.can Hi.nes cake with chocolate frosting because that’s what they made for birthdays. I am much more confident about daycare than about getting a sitter for him.

So why then, is my heart aching?

6 responses to “Defeat

  1. I also have great memories of daycare. But do please keep us updated – I’m still trying to figure all this stuff out for next year and beyond (hopefully) and I’m interested in what you decide to do. Have you found any daycares with flexible days/hours? (I’m also a graduate student so my schedule is a bit odd – teaching in the evening next year).

  2. This is probably not the sort of comment you were looking for, because it’s about the financial side of things, rather than accessing the quality of the caregivers themselves. But I trust that you have good gut instincts on what people are the right fit for Samuel. My advice is to ask questions about how many holidays and any other weeks in the year the provider closes — i.e., do you pay for closed days or not? Some days? All days?

    Also ask about policies for when you take a family vacation and Samuel is not attending daycare. Some centers don’t charge for absences that are announced 2-4 weeks in advance, but others still want the same fee regardless.

    These may seem like minor issues when you are first looking for baby care. But one of the biggest reasons moms I know end up switching caregivers later is the discovery that the place they first picked is costing them a lot of unexpected hassle and cash due to the need to hire backup baby sitters for the numerous days or weeks their regular caregiver takes off. Stuff like that can turn into a festering resentment that can ruin an otherwise good daycare relationship. (Speaking from experience on that last point, unfortunately.)

    Good luck and keep us posted!

  3. Will do, Rachel.

    Wabi, that’s exactly the kind of advice I’m wanting. Those potential problems hadn’t even occurred to me. Thanks.

  4. I hope you don’t really consider this a defeat, do you?

    As for your heart, well I’d hate being separated from my child at this age, but having done it, I can say that it gets easier, you just need to hang around with the caregiver for a day or so and check it out, maybe learn a bit about the routine, and then you will feel happier about it.

  5. I was a daycare baby and then a latch-key kid. I have a wonderful relationship with my parents and I did well in school. Going to part time daycare won’t hurt Samuel at all. And it is not defeat. It is just hard to have a career and be a SAHM. You are doing a wonderful job.

  6. Thanks Monica, I was both as well. I know it won’t hurt him – it’s really the financial burden.

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