I did a lot of thinking over the weekend. And lots of rocking in the fetal position. But I think I'm ready to eat Nabisco cookies again.
It all started Friday morning, when Junior woke up and said, “I want to go to school! I want to go to school!” When he saw me getting ready for work, he said it again, so Chuck and I decided to let him try the pre-preschool thing for a full day. If I found myself crying about the zombies again, that would be it.
Amazingly, a new teacher greeted me—a friendly teacher. I took a big gulp, said good-bye to Junior, walked across the parking lot and went to work.
Of the three times I stopped in, Junior was happily playing each time. He even took a nap. When I picked him up at four, he cried because he didn’t want to leave.
Now, I’m pretty sure you don’t want play-by-play accounts of my two-and-a-half-year-old’s foray into daycare/pre-preschool/whatever the hell you want to call it, but some important things hit me on Friday's drive home, and I'd feel better if I documented them for future reference:
1) People who seem like zombies might actually just be adjusting to a brand new childcare facility and learning the ropes themselves
2) If it's the wrong time of the month, the realization that your child doesn't need you to be happy 24-7 can turn you into a sniveling disaster
3) I'm not a cute crier
4) My 10-minute drive to and from work is the only time I have entirely to myself
Another thing I realized—remembered, actually—was that when I was three my mother sent me to a babysitter who listened to Copacabana by Barry Manilow nonstop on her record player. The woman sat for other children, some older than I.
Every time I went there, my mother sent me with a box of assorted Nabisco cookies. After she left, the older kids would lock me in the basement and push the cookies they didn’t want under the door. Imagine sitting on a basement step in the dark and watching Lorna Doones pile up. All to Copacabana.
(My mother pulled me from the place soon after.)
After I told Chuck this, I suddenly understood my Mount Everest-sized anxiety about leaving Junior in someone else’s care. Yes, the teachers were a bit detached, but it wasn’t the horror scene I’d made it out to be. And when I reread my last post, I was a little embarrassed by my automatic rifle reaction. I shot up most of Mulletville with my mental bullets.
Tomorrow is a new day. Am I ready for Barry? Never. But can I lick the creamy center with reckless abandon?
No, no I can't. But only because someone told me it's made of lard.