Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Manic Monday

Yesterday was my first full day back at work, and Harper's first time at day care. While returning to work last week was difficult, leaving Harper with strangers tugged even harder on my heart strings. I'm pretty sure we both spent much of the day lonely for each other

I spent my lunch hour with him when he ate, napped, and cuddled with me. It was so wonderful. I also had the chance to chat with one of the women who work there. I got a much more positive first impression of her than the afternoon caregiver. Hopefully she'll grow on me.

When it came time to pick him up, I walked through the door, and he was screaming in the swing. It just about broke my heart. My mind understands that he gets unhappy like that at home, too... but my heart does not compute logic. I immediately scooped him into my arms, where he settled into those sad short inhalations of breath. My poor little man. The caregiver thought he had painful gas, but really he just wanted his mama. Plus, he had only eaten a little bit of his bottle (I'm sure he was hungry and sleepy), so I gave him the rest before we left. Though he wouldn't take it from the caregiver, he didn't protest except when I took the bottle from his mouth. The entire time he ate, he gazed at me - as if to frantically (but silently) lament, "Mama, where have you been? I needed you".

Surprisingly, the worst part of the experience came when we finally got home and I fed him again. I was holding him close when I noticed something awful - he smelled like someone else. I cried and cried, knowing that I would no longer be there for every tear and every smile. Everyone says it gets easier, but I'm not sure when this sadness will numb.

Really, he was only at day care for about 3 or so hours by himself (since I was there for about an hour). Despite our separation, it took no time at all to reconnect. I fed him a few times (more than I normally would), and gave him some of his yummy baby rice cereal. He loves his cereal. He smiles and grabs for the bowl and spoon while he eats.

So today we have to do this day care yuckiness all over again. I know it is just as hard on Jeff since he's the one that leaves him there each day. At least Harper is only five minutes away, and only there part time. I can't imagine having to leave him there all day. I'm grateful that my wonderful husband was willing to work a later shift to make that happen. He's the best husband, and the best daddy.

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