So this week in the world of Mini & Mum, things were a little different. Mini started her stint at the creche so as I write this, I don’t have to constantly be looking over my shoulder to make sure she’s not
a) flinging herself backwards off the couch
b) rearranging the DVDs in typical messy Mini fashion
c) opening the fridge and helping herself to whatever takes her fancy. This week it’s buttermilk and olives. What can I say- she’s a lady of refined tastes.
It’s the strangest feeling leaving your child to be cared by others. We had Oncle Roman staying with us for the summer so we could juggle the babysitting duties around our three working schedules. Now Mini is in a building full of strange kids and adults. Obviously the staff are all lovely and the kids pleasant-although when we went to pick Mini up the other day, a few of them responded to Papa’s entrance with shouts of ‘Daddy!’ This unnerved me to no end until I returned the next day at home time and some other toddlers greeted me with a chorus of ‘Mummy!’ I now think what they’re trying to say but can’t quite form the sentence correctly is ‘Oh look, it’s Róisín’s mummy/daddy!” which is very sweet.
It makes me glad to leave Mini with other kids as she doesn’t get a whole lot of interaction with other little people. I think she’ll learn a lot and it’s great for her to have a change of environment.
Although picking her up yesterday and she in floods of tears as I was the last parent to get there has really heaped on the guilt. I’m lucky that she’s only in the creche part time. I don’t know how people cope with having to put their kids into the creche on a full time basis. And I now get a small glimpse into how hard it is for Papa when he leaves Mini behind every morning.
In an ideal life we’d have the ability to split ourselves in two and never miss a moment in our children’s lives while at the same time being able to enjoy a fulfilling job. Instead we’re left to navigate a tightrope between the two worlds. It’s a difficult act and one that requires some practise before the right balance is found.