bambino on his way to independence...
Our son starts full time daycare on Dec. 1st.
Dec. 1st isn't that far away.
This deadline has been looming for some time. It is both a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel and a terrifying moment. Our son needs more stimulation and social activity than either of us can offer him, even with all of the library programs we take him to, and I need more time to teach and write. It is obviously the right choice, but I still feel conflicted about it.
We've chosen a lovely center where friends sent one child and will be sending another who will soon be in our son's class. It is a well-lit location with experienced teachers and we'll be able to attend with him twice a week the month before for "playdates" so that we all become accustomed to it (although I do imagine the smallest one in the family will acclimate the quickest.)
I have long lists of things to do starting on Dec. 1st, but I'll probably sit in my car nearby the first day or two and cry. Or eat Cheetos. And cry. My little baby, who will be 18 months, will be (somewhat) grown up and have his own world with his own friends. Sure, there's a weekly newsletter and we'll receive more reports than we will know what to do with, but... he'll be taking his first steps into a new world.
Our sitters sometimes take him to the playground and local parks. The other day, I took him to a playground and a mother whom I didn't recognize said hello to my son by name. He'd already met them one day when he was out with a sitter. I suppose he is already starting to live independently of us.
I intellectually understand that independence is the goal, but it is still an adjustment from the needs of a tiny peanut whom we held in our arms most of the day 16 months ago. Don't tell the daycare, but I'm hoping to sometimes play hooky from work and take him out for surprise adventures. That is, until he tells me he'd rather be with his friends in daycare.