Leaving a Good Daycare Is Like Losing a Third Parent

Categories: Parenting
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Pily's Place Childcare
More than that, you learn to trust them with the bad things as well. When she called frightened one day because the kid had hit her head and was acting listless and not herself, we rushed right over to get her to the doctor. We knew Pily wasn't the sort of person who was easily worried, so we took her judgment as equal to our own. After all, she'd been around the kid for more than three years at that point.

She let us know when the kid was kind and when she was cruel, and we listened to her when she advised rewarding the former and correcting the latter. Likewise, when Pily's own methods were in opposition to our wishes, we sat down and communicated just as my wife and I would have done when there was a disagreement over childrearing.

It was a remarkable relationship, but now it's over.

Oh Pily's not cut out of the kid's life or anything. I've promised to take her to visit the first Friday so she can tell Pily all about her new school. More than that, I've told Pily she can ask for Katy any Saturday or Sunday she wishes, no different than my mom or sister-in-law. She's family.

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Pily's Place Childcare
That said, it's weird. It's very weird. Because of the nature of the country I live in, my wife and I had to pay another woman to be a professional parent alongside ourselves. Not a nanny or a servant. She helped raise my little girl, and she did a pretty damned good job of it. Then the day comes when you say, "Well, thank you for your services, but they will no longer be required. Say goodbye to Pily, sweetheart, and give her a big hug."

You see a kid five days a week for five whole years, and then she's gone. On an intellectual level I know it's just growing up and blah blah blah, but often times when I was pulling 80 hours a week Pily saw my daughter more than I ever did. I paid her, true, but paid or not it was special relationship.

Now the kid's going to school. I'll lose a little more of her myself every year. There will go a piece to her new friends, and another to her activities. Some to books and pop idols and video games, and then to romance and cars and college and marriage and work and her own kids and...

I think I see why the idea of my daughter leaving Pily's Place is affecting me so hard. It's not just that I feel sorry for Pily not seeing the kid every day any more, or that I'm upset at losing a dedicated member of Team Peanut.

It's also that I'm watching a foreshadowing of the day it happens to me, too.

Jef has a new story, a tale of headless strippers and The Rolling Stones, available now in Broken Mirrors, Fractured Minds. You can also connect with him on Facebook.

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3 comments
GlenW
GlenW

Not what I needed on the first day of school, but this is a sad state of affairs in our country when we have to pay someone else to raise our kids.

This has me re-thinking putting our son where we have. It is a very busy place, he has at least 4 different care-givers rotating in and out of his under 18 months group. Methinks this will not bring out the best in him.

Anse
Anse

Man I'm sitting here about to open my fourth beer of the afternoon, my wife out of town for work, our 9-month-old at Granny's house for the night. I looked forward to having this night to myself for weeks. Finally, I'll smoke a big slab of meat (the wife is a vegetarian, so this is a rare treat) and turn the hi fi all the way up and drink 75 beers...but damn if I don't miss that kid! I called Granny twice today to see how she was doing.

texmex01
texmex01 topcommenter

Yep, our son is 16 months old, and it is tough to leave him every morning, but he does love his school, and he smiles so big when he sees the teachers in the morning, this helps, but its still a long walk out to my truck after drop off every morning.....

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