That dreaded moment when you collect your child from nursery and as your about to leave, they reach there arms out to their carer – yep that happened to me today! So after 8 weeks of being in childcare my little girl in that moment, wanted to be in her carers arms not mine. What does this mean? That she’d rather stay with them, than come home with me? That she prefers her carer to me? Damn, it hurt, it really hurt.
Its been as tough leaving my little girl at nursery as it was first time round with my boy. Accept its a bit more of a familiar concept now, whereas it was completely alien first time round. She goes to the same nursery as my boy went to, so I know them all really well, but it’s as hard leaving her as it was him. That first day when you drop them off, passing them over to the arms of another, is hard. Once you’ve tackled that hurdle, it’s dealing with the tears when you leave them, or the opposite, like today when my little girl wanted to go back! A roller coaster of emotions.
I remember when my boy was at nursery he actually used to ask for his carer when he was at home. When he was a little bit older I specifically remember a time when I had to tell him off and when he got upset he said ‘I want Emma!’. Emma was his key carer at nursery at the time. That hit hard and stuck in my mind for a long time.
I also remember the time when my boy was poorly, but not poorly enough to stay home (in my view at the time) so I still sent him to nursery. When I dropped him off I remember looking back and seeing his crying face through the window. It broke my heart. And the guilt? I felt so guilty. Guilt is a familiar emotion I feel being a parent. I’m sure a lot of you can relate! For me it’s the guilt of leaving my little girl at nursery to be cared for by someone else, or not being there to pick up my boy from school, because I’m at work. BUT I know there are real benefits to my little girl going to nursery.
My oy, when he was at nursery, was a happy little boy, had a great time and made lots of friends. I’m hoping for the same experience for my little girl. Yes, there’ll be days when she’ll be sensitive or feel under the weather, but all children have those days whether they go to nursery or not.
I expect I’ll dwell over what happened today for a while and it did hurt that she wanted in that moment to be with her carer, but at least it’s a sign my little girl is enjoying nursery and its a positive and happy place for her be. And I’d much rather it be that way than the other.