To The Working Mom: So your Child Goes to Daycare (& why it’s okay!)

Like everything I write, I want to start this post off by saying this is 100% my opinion and experience. I know everyone has their own way that they feel about childcare and who they want to watch your babies…and that’s okay! I know Moms who will ONLY leave their child with family members – and I know Moms who will leave their child with anyone who will take ’em. I can only speak to my experience with Calvin, but hope that this helps to ease at least one new working mama’s pain of returning to her job. For most Mom’s, the decision to return to work isn’t a choice, it’s necessary for her family. And even if it is a choice, it’s still not easy to spend so many hours away from your baby-ever.
A few weeks ago I was in Calvin’s school picking him up and I saw the tiniest new baby in his room. A few minutes later her mom came in to pick her up and we got to chatting. She proceeded to tell me that her daughter was a preemie of 4lbs when born and at 3 months she was just over 8lbs. It was her 2nd day back to work and she teared up telling me how hard it has been on her. Calvin weighed more than her baby of 3 months, WHEN HE WAS BORN. I cannot even fathom having to leave him at that size. My heart hurt for her and I wanted to hug her and tell her repeatedly it does get better – in time. Us Mom’s have to do what’s best for our family, even if it’s returning to work earlier than we want. It’s okay to be sad at the beginning.
Leaving your child for the first time in the hands of essentially, strangers, is a very strange concept and hard time for new moms. For being someone who is so focused on her career and motivated in the professional aspect of my life, I was absolutely shocked at how quickly my priorities changed. I became obsessed with maternity leave and can say that those 3 months were the some of the best times of my life with my new little guy. While I don’t necessarily wish I was a SAHM, I do wish I had just a bit longer before I had to leave him. Signing up for daycare, going back to work, and adjusting to life as a working mom, was and has been the most challenging time of my life.

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For weeks I worried about the care of Calvin, how much attention he was getting, how he was developing, etc. The primary colors everywhere and the smell of the place made me nauseous. I would hardcore question the teachers, heavily scope out the landscape of the room, and avoided drop off duty 100% of the time.
I still worry about those things but 100% feel that the positives of taking your child to a care center outweigh the negatives. Calvin has grown to love his school, his teachers, and is developing right on target!
Here are my favorite benefits – I think the pictures will speak for themselves in these areas πŸ™‚
Social Interaction 
 ^leading the team meeting
^rollin’ with my homies

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Creative Development
^ my all time favorite – facepainting day!
^I’ve tried to get Calvin to color with me at home once and it was a disaster
^Calvin’s “art” that I will save forever
Independence
^food>sleep lol! ^dumping toys all over the place and making a mess somewhere that’s not my living room^playing while the other babies sleep

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Some other positives I’ve noted of sending Calvin to daycare:
  • Adult interaction – He is able to get used to being with other adults outside of just Craig and I – he loves his teachers and more importantly, they love him!

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  • Structure – I was horrible at structuring our days while at home with him and basically let him do whatever he wanted…they keep him on a set schedule for when he eats and he naps as needed throughout the day
  • Opportunities for us to connect with other parents – they host events such as “back to school night” and a Halloween parade for us to take part in with him and the other families. I discovered another Mom of a baby in Calvin’s class had the same midwife who delivered her daughter that delivered Calvin. Such a small world.
    Snapchat-1919763553.jpg^Halloween Parade
  • Trusted professionals – these caregivers are professionals at watching babies and it is their focus all day. If Calvin were at home with me, I know I would be trying to do a million things at once. They can recommend how much he should be eating, call out anything that seems abnormal, and give us advice on what to watch for. As a first time mom, I don’t have anything to compare to!
  • Daily updates – we get daily updates to our emails through a program called Life Cubby. At the end of each day we have a summary on when he ate, slept, and even how often they changed his diaper. The picture updates from Life Cubby are how we have been able to save all of these great photos of Cal.
    So – yes daycare is seriously scary to a new mom. It’s scary when they get sick for the first time, or when they get hurt for the first time, but those things are going to happen either way. I’m here to tell you that  it does get better and you will see your child learn to love it. Are there days when you just DON’T want to go to work – or when you DON’T want to take your baby to daycare? All. the. time. Pretty much every day. But because we have time apart during the week, our nights and weekends are treasured. They are special, and they are enjoyed to the fullest extent.
To the working mama, you are doing great. It’s going to be okay – you will spend your days kicking ass at your job and still come home each day to the biggest smiles you have ever seen. You CAN have both and you will learn to find the beauty in balancing it all πŸ’™

^post daycare kisses

Leave me a comment below or send me a message if you want more info or to connect – I love hearing from all of you! πŸ’•

11 thoughts on “To The Working Mom: So your Child Goes to Daycare (& why it’s okay!)

  1. I am so glad you posted it. It seems like there is such a negative perception around dropping a child off at a daycare. I really appreciate your positive spin on your experience. I know it will help a lot of other moms.

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  2. I am a WAHM. I have in the past few months been having my daughter in a daycare for a few hours 2 or 3 days a week. It has been a great experience for all the reasons you mention. She is 20 months old and the youngest. One big advantage is that she is potty training because she wants to be like the other children and not wear diapers. There are good daycare’s available (ours has only 12 spaces and tons of experience.) For us it has been very positive for both her and me.

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    1. I honestly cannot imagine working at home with my son there too – so so difficult! I’m sure it is helping both of you to have this time where you can focus on work and she can play at daycare πŸ™‚ I didn’t even think about the potty training ….this is such good news! haha

      thanks so much for reading & following ❀ Kayla

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  3. Leaving your child with anyone can be stressful, but with the right daycare and an actively involved parent a child will thrive! Good for you for doing such an amazing job. Your son is seriously cute and will no doubt be a true leader!

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  4. Let me preface this by saying that I have no children, nor am I pregnant. But this still completely spoke to me! My husband and I have been thinking about babies the last few months but all I tend to focus on is whether I would still work full-time or be a SAHM. I am not built to be a SAHM because, honestly, I would probably lose my mind being by myself so much. And I would lose my mind from taking care of a home 24/7. But I want to be able to provide my future children with as much love and care that they deserve so I thought I would be doing the selfish thing by going back to work. But this made me feel 100000x better about it. You have no idea. It’s like you knew exactly what to say to make me okay with the idea of going back to work, whenever that time comes. The photos of your little Calvin playing and laughing and learning at daycare were so sweet and inspiring. I am so happy I visited you blog and cannot wait to read more what you have to say!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is one of the nicest comments I’ve ever received! I struggled so much more going back to work than I thought I would, but am right with you, I KNOW I would struggle as a SAHM. I think working PT like 28-30 hrs/day would be my ideal scenario BUT not possible at this point in my life. As long as your baby is happy in the daycare that you chose, you can find peace in knowing you are making the right decision. ALSO – daycares have regulations and are EXPERTS in their “field” which brings me reassurance. I look forward to following you as well πŸ™‚ ❀ Kayla

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  5. I return to work in 2 days and I am sick about it. Thank you for the post, it helps! I know there will be great experiences for my son at daycare, especially being around other kids, but I am not ready to leave him yet. I love my job and it used to be the major focus of my life, I have worked very very hard to get where I am professionally, but it is so different now. I however am the major breadwinner in our family and me not returning to work isn’t an option. Thank you for your post!

    Liked by 1 person

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