Today was Callum’s first day of daycare. Although he was there less than two hours, since this week is his “gradual entry” into the program, and I was at the daycare centre the whole time, I was a bundle of nerves. (Last night I woke up at 2 a.m. feeling nauseous…) Leaving my one-year-old child in the care of complete strangers, no matter how lovely they may seem, is the most anxiety-provoking thing I have ever done.
We shopped around for a daycare, and this is a nice place: clean, bright, good caregiver to child ratio, good philosophy… Nonetheless, it feels like a baby farm to me: babies eating in high chairs in a circle, lining up to wash their hands. One little boy cried nearly the whole time we were there: separation anxiety. I felt his pain. I suppose I’ll get used to the idea, and Callum was a trooper, of course. He starting exploring the centre as soon as we got there, excited to see new toys and faces (in that order, apparently). I left the room a couple of times, and when I returned he didn’t seem to have noticed my absence: the first time, he was happily munching away on his lunch, and the second, he and another little person were figuring out a bead maze together. I’m proud of his independence! Maybe he can teach me a little?
Certainly, the song that was playing in the elevator as we made our exit didn’t help much: it was Eric Clapton’s “Tears in Heaven.” As if I hadn’t already pictured terrible scenarios involving the daycare’s fifth floor balcony. Thanks for that, universe and soft-rock elevator music station.
Coming soon: photos of Callum’s now pale yellow room and Steve’s confession…