Posted by: emjb | November 12, 2006

Parenting pointers

Matt and I have had mixed feelings about starting Nathan in daycare, and I thought it might be a good idea to discuss them in a way that’s useful to any new(er than us) parents out there.

1. It is perfectly normal to want to drop your baby off with someone, anyone, and run off to Wyoming, change your name to Darleena, and become a waitress.
2. It is also perfectly normal to, at the same time, feel unable to turn your child over to any other person to care for, because you are convinced that they will do it all wrong, scarring your child for life and insuring they will turn into a heroin-using mugger who steals your Social Security checks when you’re in the home. This includes your mother-in-law who successfully raised six lovely children, including your spouse. Track record counts for nothing; YOUR baby will be forever traumatized unless it stays within five feet of you.
3. At precisely the time you’re considering daycare, your local news will start advertising its new series about horrific accidents at local daycares; babies driving vans into buildings, children being robbed of their shoes and forced to play barefoot in the snow, etc.

So basically, accept that parenting makes you a teeny bit insane, and don’t watch the news.

Speaking of mental deficiencies, Matt and I were horrified to realize that we were sending our child to school tomorrow, but had given no thought to the fact that he had no shoes. None. Not even booties. He never has had any, because there’s never been a need–he didn’t walk, after all, and had many warm socks. And so at the last minute, we had to dash off to Target to try and find him something to wear to school. All the other babies in his class were wearing shoes when we visited, and I just didn’t want him to be Little Shoeless Nate. Like most toddlers his foot is fat and square, and I think the size 5s I got him are a bit too big. But we couldn’t wedge him into 4s. Lord knows, he’ll grow soon enough. But since he’s never worn shoes, I wonder how he’ll do in them all day. Maybe that will be the least of his worries.

I’m happy we’re taking this step, but apprehensive. He went to sleep so sweetly tonight, flinging his empty bottle out of his crib and then talking to his toys, saying “Da da da da da!” for about 15 minutes before he keeled over. Not a single cry. As far as he knows, it’s a normal night, and tomorrow’s a normal day. But instead he’ll get woken up early, hauled to a strange place with strange people, and forced to find a whole new routine. Will he eat? Sleep? Cry a lot? I worry.

I hope it’ll be a party all day. I’m afraid it will freak him out completely. I comfort myself that at least his dad will be off and have the car, so he can be picked up in an emergency. Still, it’s going to be a long day tomorrow for all of us. Fingers crossed.



  1. Hiya, I’m here via the randomizer, and I just wanted to wish you luck tomorrow!! I have exactly those fears about putting my daughter into daycare (which is why I haven’t though that could change when she drives me so batty I want to put sporks into my eye sockets). I really hope everything goes well and your little guy takes to it like a duck to water! I’ll be back to see how it went. 🙂

  2. I’ve a little 10 mo named Nate myself – and get shocked looks that my son’s big chubby feet are usually only clad in thick socks or maybe, knitted booties (if we’re outside)…and we live in Alaska. I never saw the need for shoes on babies either – he doesn’t walk, he has servants (parents) for this.

    And am dreading the day he goes to daycare, grandma takes care of him for now. But sooner or later, I’ll have to find a daycare.

    Good luck Nate!

  3. Well? How did it go?? Btw — your friends like the idea of you updating each day. It’s a great way to keep up with you without actually talking to you….btw – my daughter may be 22 but I still worry when she walks out that door….

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