Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Day Care

Today was JB’s first day at day care.

Maybe the smartest thing I’ve ever done, was to plan to work from home today. I think if I had to go to work and act happy to be there, I would not have gotten anything done.

When I drove away from the drop off, I called my sis (she’s done this before) and she said all the right things. Thank God she was in Florida on vacation and not on a cruise. (Not that she and I haven’t done extended “ship to shore” calls before…) And then when I hung up with her, I called kt. I might have called Kate first except, I didn’t want to upset her that I was freaking a little, and also, she’s been busy at work and I didn’t want to risk that she wouldn’t pick up.

Kt asked if I cried when I left him, and I said “no.”

The emotion was more like “wanting to get in a fight with someone.” I was all "tough mama-bear” not “sad mama-bear.” That’s kind of weird, right? It didn’t occur to me to cry b/c I was so tense and “all business.” I didn’t really even know how to say goodbye to him because I was worrying in my head that I forgot to bring something he might need.

Also, I was experiencing a little denial. I kind of wanted to pull a “be right back.”

Mac has started saying this. She holds her forefinger up as if to say “wait a minute” and then looking up at you says: “Be right back.” Then she turns her head away for a few seconds and turns back as if she’s left and has now come back. It’s adorable on a 2 year old who understands what be-right-back means, but she doesn’t have a quick errand in another room of the house that might take her away for a few minutes. But now I think it’s the perfect tactic for when you know you should walk away, but you don’t really want to.

In that “good-bye moment,” I wanted to be more comfortable in my own skin. I wanted to be carefree and stay to play for a few minutes. But I wasn’t at all comfortable in that moment. I didn’t like the distant feeling that the back of my throat was closing up, or the concern that my presence was distracting the day care staff. In being attentive to me, the other kids were being put on hold. So I took his coat off, gave him a kiss, and said goodbye. It wasn’t sad at the time, it was stressful.

But now re-reading this, I’m choking up a little. In the quite space of the GSO, I can be gentler with myself and see why it’s okay to feel mad-protective, sad, or scared to leave him even for a few hours. It’s crazy how adults will pretend something emotional is not emotional just to get through it.

Or maybe I should just speak for myself.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice job, T. Hang in there. Love you. -The Indian, The Giggler and the WEM