Childcare sucks

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I feel like crap over my one year old’s first day at nursery. They couldn’t get her to nap. She wouldn’t eat or drink milk (she’s normally breastfed on demand, I sent some Breastmilk which she pushed away). She cried all day. In the end they called me to go in because they couldn’t settle her. My son has been attending this nursery for 2 years and I’ve never had a call to go in to settle him but he started at 2 years old, I feel the extra year really helped him. We got there and her eyes were all puffy and red. She saw me and signed for milk immediately so I nursed her and she was fine.

I just feel horrid about it though. I wish I didn’t have to work while the kids were little. I know I’m lucky to have had a year of maternity leave because I’m in England and that I only have to go back part time and I’m trying to focus on that but we just aren’t ready regardless and I hate it. I hate that feeling where all you want is to be with your baby and instead you have to send them to strangers where you know the care isn’t as good as what you would give them but (and this is the kicker) you have to pay through the nose for that care. And worst of all, where you know they are crying because all they want is you and what you can give them. Meanwhile, I’m stuck in a job where I have to milk my boobs with an electric pump on my harried lunch break while my baby is at nursery crying for my milk. It’s torture. It feels barbaric to me. I know this might sound over the top to some but to me every fibre of my being is screaming that this is wrong. I need to be with her. I’m aware as a breastfeeder that my body is full of hormones helping to make me feel like this. Making me not want to be apart from my daughter because that’s nature’s way of ensuring her survival but the feelings are very real regardless. I can’t rationalise my gut instinct.

I had feared this may be the case. She’s a happy but very attached baby. We are attachment parents by nature. She has slept next to me in my bed every night since birth. She takes every nap on me in the baby carrier. She nurses on demand. She spends every day with her big brother too. She isn’t fazed by the hustle and bustle of the nursery, on the contrary she crawls and toddles around like she rules the place. She’s used to being around kids from going to big playgroups etc with her older brother from birth. I think the big issue is not being able to nap and not being able to nurse. It took two women  two hours to try get her to nap, every time they tried to lie her down she woke up but they can’t hold her all the time as they have other babies to look after. We’ve not once managed to get her down, day or night since birth. She needs to be held. In a way it’s quite vindicating that they couldn’t do it either but I’d rather my baby napped and was happy! The carers there are open to trying her in the baby carrier so we are taking that in tomorrow for them. Fingers crossed its something that will work. If she isn’t so tired I’m hoping she will adjust to no milk in the day. She eats well and eats everything so she’s not going to starve.

Baby Lena playing with toy kitchen

So we’ll just have to see how it goes and try not to torture ourselves with parental guilt too much in the meantime. We’ve been surrounding ourselves in spreadsheets to see if there is anything we can do to avoid childcare and a potential option is for Papa Ginge to go part time along with me. It would mean no luxuries and we would be on the bare bones of our arses while doing it but it feels worth it to me. I think I can forgo luxuries, holidays and gifts for a couple of years if it means my baby doesn’t have to cry a second longer than she has to. So we’ll see how these next few weeks go and explore our options.

Wish us luck, and leave us a comment telling us how you work small kids, childcare and work.

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12 thoughts on “Childcare sucks”

  1. That really stinks that she’s having a rough time of it. I’m super glad to read that the daycare is letting you bring in the carrier! Here in the US, you can’t do that. I was up at my daycare, and the carers were having the same kind of problem. I volunteered to walk around with the sweet baby, got her to sleep, and put her down. I was so glad to be able to help so another mommy didn’t have to be called in like you were. I know that’s agonizing.

  2. I’m so sorry to hear that the move to nursery is so hard for you all. I’m afraid I don’t have any helpful words of wisdom. We will be doing the same in a couple of months and I’m dreading it all ready.
    I really hope things get better. Hopefully she will be able to nap in the carrier and precious sleep will mean she is happier there.

  3. This is horrible to read and as an outsider it makes sense for you to stay at home a little longer. I’m so sorry this isn’t an option for you 🙁

    When my children were small I worked part time but 12 hours every Saturday and Sunday on an enhanced wage for unsocial hours. It was a killer saw what no family time together at the weekends but that was the sacrifice I had to make to be at home through the week. My husband works shifts so we did have time together through the week. Gradually I reduced my hours as I started earning bits and pieces from blogging.

    I really hope you find a solution soon. This can’t continue xxx

    • Thanks Sam! I’m pleased you were able to find a solution that worked for you guys. I would LOVE blogging to work for me like that. That would be the dream. In the meantime I’m really hoping this part time thing pans out for Papa Ginge, that would make life so much better for us. We’ll keep trying nursery for a few weeks while we await the outcome and if she’s still finding it hard look at childminders. Thank you for your support.

  4. Maybe the sling will be the thing she needs? Noah is terrible at napping at nursery – he gets 30 minutes maximum if we’re lucky. I call Thursday the catch up day because I do the housework that’s been missed all week while he sleeps a mammoth nap because he’s not had any all week.

    We have just applied for part time working for my OH – child care is horribly expensive and the wrench of dropping the kids off all day when they need their parents is awful.

    Alternatively have you considered seeing if any of your friends work opposite days to you? Or maybe a childminder? It might work for her to have more of a home routine because if nothing else they might be able to get her to nap in the car, if she does that?

    Very best wishes, it’s such an awful, awful experience. I could write a book here on my own experiences but I’d rather not have it on the internet.

    • Thanks Babyfoote! The carrier definitely helped the second time for sure. I don’t have any friends or family who can help. We looked into childminders and that will be an option if this doesn’t get any better. It really is rotten having to leave your babies when you don’t want to. Thank you for your support and for sharing, hearing the similar experiences of others helps make me feel a little better!

  5. hello there! came across your blog randomly, hope your little one has settled in more at daycare over the past few weeks! We have been lucky and only need to pay for daycare for a day and a half so we have a nanny that comes to the house. I work part as a therapist and I also am a distributor for a health and wellness company which allows me to “work from home” and work my office job less and less! Im hoping over the next year to be able to be at home even more with doing the distributor job… im always looking for people to join my team if you are ever interested in making money and being able to stay home more with your kiddos!!


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