Wednesday, 6 June 2012
I got up with him around 9am, which sounds nice except the only sleep I got last night was from 7 to 9. We came downstairs and I sat him on my lap at the computer desk, hoping for 5 minutes of mindless email checking to let myself wake up a bit. I looked at the calendar on the wall above the printer. Daycare appointment, 10am. Dammit! No 5 minute grace period, now Hunter found himself unceremoniously plopped on the floor as I scrambled around to get ready. We raced out of the house in a flurry of unkemptness, the poor dog left without his breakfast or morning pee.
We made it on time, and I tried to act calm and graceful as we walked towards the fenced play yard where three women were watching us approach with big kid-friendly smiles. A swarm of children played around them and some of them came right over to the fence to say hi to the new baby they hadn't seen before.
I got a tour, and tried to think of all the right questions to ask as we walked around. Hunter flashed his big flirtatious smile at everyone, and all the staff were, as you'd expect, very friendly. But my chest felt tighter and tighter as the tour went on, and when we got back in the car an hour later I was almost crying.
In two months I have to leave my baby.
I knew it would be hard, but I didn't expect it to be this hard. At one point while I sat with the daycare director in her office chatting, Hunter reached out for her and she held out her hands to take him from me. I let her take him, of course, and we laughed as he giggled happily and grabbed her thick curly hair, but inside I was screaming, "don't take him from me yet!!!"
On the drive home I was full of ridiculous worries. What if they won't use his all natural sunscreen? What if he's sick all the time and develops autism from all the antibiotics he'll have to take? What if he screams and cries all day? But they all paled in comparison to my biggest fear.
What if he doesn't miss me?
Being mom to a baby is hard. At times it is exhausting, frustrating, stressful, isolating and tedious. There are many moments when I miss work, when I crave the company, mental stimulation and physical labour of my job. But no career can magnify your heart like being a mother can, and now I find that it is so big, all it takes is the slightest waft of a glance, a toothless smile or an outstretched hand to make me melt into a puddle of love. I would not trade this for anything.
I know he will miss me. I know this is growing pains for both of us. I hope that someday in the not too distant future I can leave my job and be a full time mother the way my mother was for me. But for now, I will do everything I can to treasure June and July.
It's still just you and me, baby.