About Me

Kent, United Kingdom
I have the perfect family but still struggle to find the light in the darkness of post-natal depression.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

childminders and company

No exclamation mark again today - but there should be, after childminders if not all of it.
Because today, dear readers, we achieved something incredible - I left Tash at the childminder's for a whole hour!
The last time we attempted it, about two months ago, it was a bit of a disaster - she cried the whole time and consequently when I picked her up she got the message that if she cried I came back.
But I - we - were determined to perservere (despite opposition from her grandparents - but that's another post!) because we really believe she will benefit from it in the end, and we fear without some alternative caregiver beyond me, mark or her grandparents she will find pre-school a traumatic shock.
So after weeks of "settling in" visits, where we took her and stayed with her, today was the big day.
I was given the responsibility of leaving her, and carefully prepared her by telling her how much fun she was going to have (with Mark in the background muttering about abandonment and traumas....) and then took her round. She was quickly playing with the toy kitchen set so I told her I was going and went! And stood outside for a few minutes listening as the screams got louder and louder and LOUDER and even more angry.
Going home seemed like a better option, so I did, and counted the minutes till we could call and see how things were.
And do you know what? Things were fine! She had stopped crying completely within five minutes of me leaving, was a bit clingy to Julia, one half of the childminding team, for about 20 mins, then toddled off to play. And by the time I picked her up she had even made friends with Malcolm, the other half, and was not keen to come home!
I'm so proud of how she managed it - and of myself for going through with it. It won't be a surprise to some people that even this morning I was thinking maybe we could just abandon the whole idea and spend longer settling her at preschool, but I'm so pleased I made myself do it.
Julia had previously picked up on my reluctance to leave her, and suggested it was in fact me who had more of a problem with it than Tasha, and she may have been right (shock horror - the crudg was wrong about something?!).
We're doing the same next week, then they are away for two weeks, then one more week of short stays then she starts properly. And at the moment i'm feeling quite optimistic about it all!

Now, on to company. I haven't had any today! Which last year would have been a huge trauma - I simply couldn't cope being left on my own with Tash, or with nothing to do all day except hours and hours of baby stuff. Luckily I had some excellent friends who were quite truthfully lifesavers and helped distract me with coffee trips, walks in the park and outings to Canterbury.
But today, for one reason or another, they were all busy, leaving me with no plans at all. I can still vividly remember the feelings of panic I had when it happened before, and my utter desperation to get out and see anyone (even some of the more scary alpha-mum or yummy mummy types would do!). But today Tash and I have snuggled on the sofa, read some books, played peekaboo, had some musical time and eaten lunch. She's asleep now, hence blog-time, but it's been remarkably trauma-free.

But sadly that means I have no excuse for not doing the chores, so I'd best at least make a token effort! More soon...

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