After being there for every moment of her life, I returned to work when Ladybug was 11 weeks old. This was made slightly easier because I had the most awesome child care provider. We met because our husbands grew up together, and she's a Godsend. She didn't bat an eye at my "new mommy" requests. She listened to all of my "rules" because of Ladybug's reflux. She would send me pictures and every day she had updates. She was my partner-in-crime against the persistent-antibiotic-induced diaper rash from hell. She loved on Ladybug like she was her own. Ladybug is a rock-star in her house. I never worried about leaving Ladybug. In fact, there were many a time when Ladybug would go running in the other direction when I got there because she wanted to stay and play.
Unfortunately for all of us, my superwoman sitter (there should be a better term than that) will be going in another direction with her career sooner than any of us wanted. I wish her all the best and am thankful for the friendship we've forged and most importantly for the way she's loved on my baby. From 11 weeks to 15 months she's been my eyes and ears to all of the moments I missed. She's given my baby kisses and cuddles, has helped her grow into an increasingly opinionated toddler (aka big baby).
|Ready for her last day with the WonderSitter|
How do you replace that? Simple answer, I can't.
After an exhaustive search, Ladybug is going to "school". A center with classrooms, lesson plans and sign language. A school that will not be sending me text messages when she does something cute or new, who I won't be having deep meaningful conversations with about life and making me late for work. A school that won't say it's no big deal if Ladybug has the runs, or won't bat an eye when Ladybug jacks everyone for their dinner.
However, it is a school that will allow her to continue to grow. A place that will help to enhance her ever growing vocabulary. She'll get additional social skills and will have brand new experiences. She'll learn to work in groups (one of us has to, and it probably won't be me) and will grow and be enriched in ways I can't even conceive of. And she better since it's going to cost 3 arms, 4 legs, 2 esophagus, 1/2 liver, 1/10 lung and both of my pinkie toes. This feels like the right place for us.
I had a talk with Ladybug on the way to registration today:
Me: Okay Ladybug, today was your last day with WonderSitter, ok?
Me: Starting Monday, you're going to be going to big girl school, ok?
Me: And it's going to be fun and you're going to learn new things, ok?
She's ready, even if I'm not.