I thought about being really dramatic and starting this post off by saying that I woke up this morning to gray skies, heavy rain, and blustery winds and thought it was appropriate weather for our first day taking Annie to daycare. But then I thought, “Hey, grow up already! It’s not that bad! It’s only daycare.”
Baby girl woke up as happy as can be this morning, flashing big gummy smiles to me and David one right after the other. We loaded her – and all of her stuff – into the car and she didn’t fuss once about being in the car seat. (Annie has a love-hate relationship with her car seat. Usually she loves it only when it puts her to sleep. The rest of the time she doesn’t seem to care for it much. And stop at a red light and it’s all over…she is not a fan!). Then we drove the quarter of a mile to her “school.” I kid you not, this place could not be any more convenient – it is one street over from our house. We unloaded her and took her inside, where she proceeded to smile at Miss Michelle, the lady who welcomes the babies to the nursery in the mornings. It’s like Annie was telling me, “Hey Mom, chill out. I’m fine! See, look, I’m smiling and everything.”
Annie and Mommy get in a little quality time before school.
I held it together pretty well inside the daycare. I didn’t even get teary-eyed, really. It helped that David was there with me. It wasn’t until we got back in the car that my chin started to quiver. And once we got back to the house I had to sit in the car for a couple of minutes and “collect myself,” as they say. There was no sobbing, no hysterical tears…then again, I’m not really a hysterical tears kind of girl. Just a few little drops of emotion over leaving my baby girl with someone she doesn’t know.
I know she’s too young to understand things like abandonment and will instead probably think it’s pretty cool to be in a room with a bunch of people her size. And I know she’ll get plenty of attention, while still somehow learning that the world doesn’t revolve around her – although it kind of does at our house. And from the looks of that nursery she’s going to be in baby toy heaven. There were more bouncy seats and activity gyms and other gadgets than we could ever fit in our little house. But it’s still hard to picture her somewhere else for the whole day, being cared for by people she doesn’t know. People we don’t know…yet.
David is Mr. Positive about the whole thing, and that helps a lot. He pointed out to me on the car ride back to the house that Annie starts making friends today, and that she will probably never have that traumatic first day of school experience that some kids have who have never been away from home until kindergarten. I know she will benefit from the things her caregivers teach her and the skills she learns from the other babies.
And, as you might expect, Annie did fabulously at school today. When we brought her home, she was all smiles.
And even gave us a special treat by laughing out loud for the very first time!
So it is obvious that Annie's first day of school was far harder on me than it was on her. And that's pretty much what I suspected - and hoped - would happen.
Hanging out with Daddy after school.
Annie’s world just got a little bigger today. That’s all. And that’s a very good thing.
"So, um, can I go back to school now, guys?"