Thursday, July 24, 2008

At this rate, I'll need hospitalization for preschool

Next week M starts at her new daycare. We're a long road getting here (and an awesome run of good luck). I had a horrible time finding a good daycare. I tried home daycares (they never called me back, unprofessional much?), and the first center we went to seemed nice enough, then some surly lady I'd never met was the only one there when I showed up for our first day, and she said she didn't change diapers unless she had to, and she put M's rocking bouncer seat on a table, with the warning label facing me. (sorry about the run on) We lasted five minutes there. Then I scrambled, ended up paying way more than I wanted to, and found a center where they had some knowledge of breast milk, pretty knowledgeable staff, and the rocked the babies to sleep. I certainly wasn't thinking about toddlers or preschool programs at the time.

However, as she has gotten older, it has become clear that the place where she was, while acceptable, was nothing special. I never met the toddler teacher, even as she was a month away from switching. They never did parent/teacher conferences and my interactions with the lead infant teacher were less than stellar. She would tell me that they only did what the parents requested, and then complain about my requests. She complained about not having enough money and it made me uncomfortable. The longer she stayed there, the more I worried about if she would be ready for school when the time came. (especially when I saw the preschool teacher drag a kid out of her room forcefully for soiling his pants)

I signed up for a new daycare downtown by my work, but their next opening was May... 2009. I crossed my fingers, and hoped for earlier. Then, after a particularly bad run of things at the current place, I got the call. We had a spot. She just had to be walking. I delayed her start a couple of weeks while we got that taken care of (by we, I mean she finally was stubborn enough to do it), and we start next Monday.

This week we did a couple of visits, to make sure she's ready, and so we could meet the staff.

She did great. She played, climbed playground equipment, went down the slides, sat at a table to eat her breakfast, and forgot we had just left her easily. (she never had transition issues before, but then she'd known her teachers since she was 3 months old)

Me, not so much. I thought I was great, but all the big girl behavior (holy crap, she's not an infant any more, wtf?), and then getting locked in the parking garage (that is a whole other rant), had me having a little mini breakdown in my car. She is going to do so well, her teachers are amazing. She is going to be challenged, and it is going to be hard, but she will thrive there. She won't be the youngest for long, she already towers over some of the kids, and it will be great. Best, if there are issues, there is communication we never had before. We have partners in helping her along while having tons of fun. I can't wait, but I might need a sedative by the end of the day Monday.


Jill said...

Oh, congrats! It sounds like this is a MUCH MUCH better fit for your family.

(And I broke down in tears the first time I had to drop off my eldest. Knew I probably would as I'm an easy crier, but still, a tad embarrassing. Fortunately, she was only a wee little baby, so it didn't scar her or scare her or anything... just embarrassed me.)

Christina said...

It's never easy to leave them behind. I had a tough time just leaving the girls with Aaron when I went to BlogHer, and I knew he'd do a good job!

Sounds like the new place will be a good fit. And it does get easier.