The downside of daycare
It is no secret that I am super pro daycare. I talk often that it is what is best for our kid but in reality, I think it is a damn good thing for all kids. It doesn’t mean that I judge stay at home parent families or folks who have other childcare situations – I just think it is a good thing. It’s great I do since we need it and do not have the ability to have one of us at home.
There is so much I love about it – the relationships with other kids, the fun activities, the learning. I can’t speak for every kid ever but for Gus this is 100% something he needs and I feel mostly good about us having him there.
But of course there are downsides too and I am feeling them hard this week. On Monday he came home with a scab on his head. Nothing was mentioned to me about it at pick up and when I asked Tuesday morning they had noticed it but had no idea what happened. Wednesday night we were getting him ready for bed and noticed a full set of teeth marks on his stomach. He had clearly been bitten and hard. I asked about it Thursday morning – no idea.
Our providers are usually pretty attentive and I trust that if Gus was really upset they would have figured it out so there is some comfort in the fact he didn’t care. There is a never kid at daycare, D. Gus constantly tells us, “I don’t like D” and “D hit me”. I have seen the kid hit Gus and in talking to the teachers I know this is true. I also know they are working on it with D and that D is excited to see Gus every day so it is not an all mean thing. I also know that Gus is more verbal than D and sometimes that is hard on kids. When we picked Gus up the other day D was getting picked up at the same time and was standing by the door as his dad was looking for something. Gus went over to him, said, “Get away from door NOW” and started to take D’s hand off the door before we stopped him. So you know, my kid is not completely innocent here.
When it talked to the daycare owner (she’s the head teacher and the other lead teacher was there too) about the bite marks I felt like they took it seriously and were concerned that Gus had been hurt twice that week without them knowing. They both love Gus. Like absolutely adore him. I have no intentions of pulling him out of there and they know that. But it’s hard. It’s hard to not be able to protect your kid, even when I am sure this is a bigger deal to me than it is to him. I hate the idea of anyone being mean to him while fulling understanding that kids and kids and stuff happens.
But the reality is he runs from the car to the daycare every morning. He doesn’t care about saying goodbye to me. He’s not clingy with me or the teachers. He doesn’t want to leave when I pick him up. He talks about his friends and teachers all the time. He’s fine. He’s happy. I just can’t always protect him and it’s hard to accept that they can’t either.
Oh, and as a bonus this week he told us, “Mommies and daddies are married!” Sigh.