Daycare (Di)Stress

It’s been a rough week in the daycare world for all of us…and NOT just because of the pancakes. I swear. Three of the last four days, Boopsie has been in a foul, sad mood when we picked her up… a “hot mess,” if you will.

Yesterday, Daddy-o brought Boopsie home after another rough day. Miss C (daycare provider) said that she didn’t think anything was wrong with Boopsie, but her personality is just developing. What? My kid comes home a whining, crying mess and you’re trying to tell me that’s just her personality developing? Six weeks after you told us she was the happiest baby you’ve had in 25 years of daycare?

Between that and learning that, in addition to pancakes, Boopsie has had a bunch of other food (including cheese, WTF??) that we didn’t know about, I’m beginning to question our choice of day cares and wondering if we need to look elsewhere.

God, that sounds exhausting. So, in my usual, non-anal, non-type-A way, I’ve started a table of observations/questions and explanations/answers. (Did you get my sarcasm?)

Observations/Concerns Possible, Rational Explanations
In the past few weeks, Boopsie has been frequently coming home from day care very exhausted and unhappy. Highly disconcerting. She doesn’t usually end up exhausted and unhappy after a day with us. After a long day of work, I am tired and (sometimes) unhappy, too. It could be a growth/development issue.
Boopsie keeps going on “drinking strikes” at day care. This one is a stumper. Maybe other babies, who are thrilled with their day care and providers do the same thing?
When I pick Boopsie up, she’s never engaged with a toy, book or other object. (Though sometimes she is in the Johnny Jumper.) Miss C is making it easier for parents to get in, get their kids, and get out.
Miss C frequently sounds exasperated with the other (older) kids, and scolds them for not following her instructions. Miss C values good behavior and teaches them manners and what good behavior is. If I had a bunch of toddlers around, wouldn’t I scold them, too?
I never seen any “curriculum”-type activities going on with the older . I’m there five minutes, twice a day.
I sent Boopsie with 10 diapers today and she came home with 7. (8+ hours) Maybe Miss C has a stash? (Entirely possible.)
I’m not getting all the information I would like to have about when she’s sleeping (and for how long), what she’s eating, and what she’s doing during the day. Maybe I’m asking too much? Perhaps we’d be more comfortable in a center?

It’s late. I’m wiped. These are the things (good and bad and complicated) I’m thinking as I go to bed:

  • Boopsie does not cry when we drop her off, which tells me (I hope) that nothing is really wrong.
  • We’re not talking about safety here, just style and ideals. What do we want for her, now and in the future?
  • Miss C has been doing this for over 20 years and has never had a complaint… is the problem here with me and what I want and expect? Am I asking too much?
  • I’m having a hard time trusting my intuition. My instinct is saying that I want a more nurturing, educational environment where I know more about what’s going on (eating, sleeping, activities). But I’m second-guessing that big-time. Am I just being an overprotective spazz?

What do YOU think?

Did I mention I’m tired?

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8 Comments

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8 responses to “Daycare (Di)Stress

  1. Yikes. Doesn’t sound fun at all. FWIW (since they are the same age) Ellis is currently on a bit of bottle strike at daycare and at home (when I am not around to nurse) – drinking 3.5 or 4 oz out of 6 (he was up to 7). Not sure what that is about – maybe just ready for more food? He also comes home exhausted after a day at daycare and I think there is a nine month growth spurt coming up? Yay for us.

    With that said, I think you should follow your gut. Try not to second guess yourself – you know what is right for Boop. You are a good mom and know if this isn’t a good fit.

    We get a form every night listing his naps, what he ate etc…I can send that to you if you want to ask her to start filling it out? And, could you bring in food for her and ask the provider to only feed her with stuff from home?

    Good luck!

  2. Crystal

    Trust your gut! We had a very similar experience with Adyn when she was little and we turned out to be right…..you know as a mom what is best and if things just “aren’t right”. As exhausting as it is to find another daycare, just start interviewing now and see where it takes you, you may end up staying where you are, but it never hurts to do more research….we have tried them all, nanny, in home and centers, and to be honest we have always been happier with the more structure, interaction with kids their age, and overall environment of a church or daycare center….but that is just us, and everyone is a little different, follow your instincts, because they are always right for your family and child 🙂

  3. Crystal

    PS, I was not a huge fan of a “church” daycare, but to date, it has truly been the BEST for our girls….that is where they are now, when Adyn isn’t in school anyway.

    • Good to know! I thought I really wanted a home environment, but now I’m wondering if a center would be better for us…

    • Crystal

      It is a work in progress for sure, as your kids change, your desires or what you think is best for them change too….you get more comfortable with some things and then others become more of an issue…..constant evolution 🙂

  4. Mindy

    I agree that you should follow your gut! Have you ever just dropped by during the day or earlier than your normal pickup time? That way you could get a glimpse of what’s going on when she’s not expecting parents. Don’t know if it’s feasible but it might give you some valuable info. And definitely don’t feel like you’re asking too much. She is providing a service to you, you ask for what you need, to ensure the best for your child. She will either be able to meet your needs or she won’t. If she doesn’t then it’s not the right fit for you or her! Hang in there and trust your instincts!!!!!

  5. Michelle

    My daycare lady (not in a center but in her home) gives the moms if they ask for it, a written report on what baby ate, pooped/peed, slept and activities engaged in. One mom just puts a notebook in her daughter’s bag. I take the verbal vs written report. Bottom line, you should always be receiving updates on your little one.
    How she responds/disciplines older kids in your presence is a preview of things to come for your kid. If it doesn’t sit right with you now and it’s not your kid, how will you feel when it is your kid?

    If I pick up my kid and she’s in a bad mood, my daycare lady tells me so along with her opinion as to why: short nap, under the weather, overtired if playing outside, etc. But it tends to be a one day thing, not consistently. If it is consistent, then I would question why baby is so cranky.
    There should be a rough outline of what the kids do during the day: group play, individual play, story time, quiet time/nap time, etc. My daycare lady does this and then she’ll focus on certain themes: a while back, it was the solar system so they read books about it, they drew pictures of the moon, they each got to be a planet, etc all over the course of a week. Another time, it was on manners so she did hand puppets for the kids… you get the point. No matter how young your little one is, there should still be some instruction and structure and your kid is involved as her age is appropriate. She does limit TV time but she says that when it starts to get close to pick-up time, she will put in a DVD because all the kids get excited at that time of the day so bear that in mind. What is baby doing if you have to pick her up early?
    And never underestimate your insticts as a mother. More likely than not, you are right and if you keep talking yourself out of your uneasiness, you still won’t be totally comfortable.
    Sorry this is so long!

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