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If you are looking for important things to consider in order to choose the best daycare for your child then you’ve come to the right place.
I postponed daycare for as long as I could…
After giving birth I had my mom coming all the way from my home country to help me. The plan was to have her for 3 months so she could help me with the baby. And so it happened.
Those 3 months were Heaven, pure Heaven! I was able to focus on my baby and on my first-time mom duties, without worrying about cooking, cleaning the house, etc.
Her staying was coming to an end and I knew what the next step would have been: daycare. My heart was breaking, so I postponed it.
I asked her to stay for another 3 months and I think that was wise to do. My baby was not even holding her head at that time. I refused to put her in daycare that little. And so my Heaven continued!
For a total of 6 months, I was relaxed and able to not only fully enjoy my baby but also work part-time. Being able to go to work and knowing my baby was safe and taken good care of was more than perfect.
I used to text and call my mom to check on my baby as often as I could.
Things changed once she left and daycare was inevitable. The first weeks were horrible, but that’s what happens when you face changes: you have to adapt.
I started working full time and so my baby started her full-time daycare schedule. Waking my baby up in the morning (6 am) was painful.
Mornings became hectic: getting myself ready, getting the baby ready, preparing my to-go breakfast and cleaning after ourselves, dropping her off and getting to work in a timely manner.
That’s life. I am sure that’s the schedule of many other moms. I am not complaining.
MOST PAINFUL STEP: DROP OFF
But that was the easy part. The hardest part was leaving her at the daycare crying with tears while pulling my clothes in an attempt to beg me not to leave her there and hearing her cry on my way to the car.
And I was supposed to continue with my day?! No way. At work all I could think about was her and whether she was safe or not.
It took us a while to accommodate and yes I said ‘us’ because we were in that together. It was a change for both of us.
It was hard for her to get used to being without me but with the other kids and teacher, and it was hard for me to get used to the thought that she was in good hands and no, nobody will abuse her.
It’s been 8 months now and I would say she is doing ok. The worst part is when they transfer them from one class to another: it’s like starting all over again.
In case you are thinking of putting your baby in daycare here are some aspects you might want to consider:
- How many kids per class
- How many teachers per class (mine has 2 teachers per 8 kids/babies)
- Hours of operation
- Late fee (mine charges if parent is late to pick up child)
- Holidays calendar (what days they are closed)
- Food/Formula whether they provide or not and menu (mine has homemade catered food, they have a monthly menu)
- How often they change diapers (mine every 2 hours or sooner if needed)
- What supplies you need to provide (diapers, cream, blanket, bedding sheet, extra clothes)
- Activities (e.g because it’s summer break mine has different activities each day: arts & crafts, water day, petting zoo, etc.)
- Extra classes: maybe they offer additional classes (mine has music class each Friday at a low cost)
- Surveillance cameras (mine has but parents don’t have access unless an incident occurs)
- Security (mine has gate and you sign in first)
- Naps (when my daughter was in the baby class she was taking 3 naps during the day; once they transferred her she only takes a 2-hour nap)
- Being sick policy (mine accepts the child back after 48 hours and with doctor’s letter)
- Photos: they may send you photos throughout the day (mine uses Instagram and every now and then they post pictures)
- Toys maintenance (mine wipes them at the end of the day, also parents never come in the baby class so the floor can stay as clean as possible, teachers wears slippers)
*I recently bought this super cute backpack for my daughter to use in daycare. It is just the right size.
If you are wondering what to pack for your little one in daycare here are some suggestions:
- Formula (already mixed, they are not allowed to mix it for you, nor to administer medicine) or baby food (I like the pouches)
- Snack (I put her teething snack)
- Sippy cup with water
- Almond milk
- Extra clothes
It all depends on the age of your child. I think daycare helped my daughter improve her social skills, motor skills, abilities, and yes, her immunity.
They say they build a stronger immunity once they go to daycare and come in contact with other kids (meaning all kinds of viruses and bacteria and other good “stuff” like that).
I was lucky enough to postpone daycare until my daughter was 2.5 because I was a nanny and I was able to bring her to work with me. I went back after three weeks and it was rough. I didn’t want to send my daughter to daycare until she was able to communicate with me about how her day was. These are great ideas to ask daycare providers when you are looking at daycares. Thanks for sharing!
Hi Sierrah, you made a good point: you waited until your daughter was able to communicate. It is painful indeed to put our kids in daycare especially if they are young. Unfortunately, when she was 6 months old I had no choice. Even to this day (16 months old) she still has some days when she cries when I drop her off in daycare. It’s tough! Thank you for visiting my blog!