The unprepared daycare provider

I’ve always been happy with my choice of Thomas’s daycare… that is, until I started talking to a mommy-friend of mine. She’s a much more thorough mom than I am, and I sometimes doubt my decisions after talking with her. And so came the topic of daycare and my mind started to race. In the end, I’m pretty sure it completed a marathon.

I started thinking about our first play-date last week. There were only two high chairs in the kitchen. How can she possibly feed four little people with only two high chairs. My son will not be the last one to eat. I refuse to have him sit there and wait while all the other kids have their lunch. Must talk to her about this.

Then I started thinking about how I didn’t remember opening a gate when I went into her backyard. I will not have my son play in an unfenced yard. That’s such a safety hazard. He’s going to run into the street and get hit by a car. I can’t believe she would open a daycare and not have a fenced yard. This is a make-it or break-it situation.

I also realized that with four little people, it will be impossible for her to go for walks in the summer with the kids. She said she would take them to the park. I want my son to go to the park. Obviously she’s completely unprepared.

At that point I realized how much of a bad mother I was – willing to drop my child off at this woman’s house, who doesn’t have enough high chairs, has a backyard that is a total safety concern and my son won’t go to the park. I spent the entire weekend thinking about how to approach these concerns with her. I’m sure she has a good answer for everything right? She’s going to buy more high chairs, she obviously removed the fence for the winter… right?

So I called A, spent some time just talking about stuff (didn’t want to come off too strong at first), and then I dove into it:

Me: So, I realized the other day that you only had two high chairs. Are you planning on getting more?

A: They’re in my basement. I just brought up one extra one when Thomas was here. But yes, I have enough high chairs for all the kids.

Me: (laughing awkwardly) Of course you do. That was a silly question. Please don’t take it personally.

A: No worries. I also have spoons, and bowls and bibs and everything else they’ll need to eat (ok, so she was mocking me a little).

Me: That’s good (heh, heh), ummm… I was also thinking how I didn’t open a gate when I went into your backyard the other day. Are you planning on having a fence installed in the early spring?

A: We have a fence, I just left the gate open so it would be easier for you to get through with Thomas (thoughtful).

Me: (laughing awkwardly AGAIN), Right. I guess I just didn’t realize it was there because I didn’t open. Heh, heh. I’m sure you’re ready to start taking care of these little ones. I’m sorry, my mind is just racing and I spent the entire weekend thinking about the fact that my child was going to eat lunch last and after lunch would head outside and run into the street.

A: (laughing at my neurotics) You know, I really thought things through. I have everything they’ll need: a playpen for each kid, their own little drawer where I’ll keep diapers, wipes, a change of clothes, a special blanket to sleep with if they need one. Basically anything that will make his time here pretty awesome. I also bought an outdoor wagon with four attachments so when we go to the park every kid will have his own little spot to sit – and it also has a belt buckle to keep them safe. (there was the answer to my third question.)

Now I felt like such an idiot. My going-back-to-work nerves are getting the best of me. No more marathon running for my mind. A is awesome and I’m happy we found her. Thomas is going to LOVE it there.

We ended the conversation with laughter. She reassured me that Thomas was such a pleasure to be around the other day that it balanced out my craziness. A few minutes after we hung up, I received an email. It simply said: Just to ease your mind…

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