Just in case this is the first Nomad Mom post you have ever read, I’ll let you in on a little secret: my kids drive me nuts. Phew, glad that is out of the way. So it should come as no surprise to you that my kids go to daycare four days per week. I keep them home one day per week for a “mamadag” as the Dutch call it. That day helps me remember why I send them to daycare the other four days.
Nomad Papa has been traveling all month (seriously…all freaking month. He comes home for a few days between trips and then heads off again. Each week I get to restart the “Where’s Papa” discussion. It’s awesome. I hope we can do it again next month.) so I have been on daycare drop-off and pick-up duty.
Daycare pick-up duty is the best. The kids have been gone long enough for me to have forgotten how bad they are. I have been gone long enough for the kids to have forgotten how bitchy I am. Everyone is glad to see everyone else. Well, for the first 35 seconds anyway. Then they start asking for cookies and refusing to put on their jackets and I remember why 6 euros per hour per kid is a bargain for childcare. Those workers earn every penny of their salary.
Daycare drop-off is a whole other matter. Not because it is bad, quite the opposite! My kids love the daycare. LOVE IT. They sing most of the way there and then knock each other over trying to get into the front door. They love their teachers. They love their friends. They love their Minnie Mouse and Hello Kitty slippers they get to wear.
You know what they don’t love? Me. As soon as we get within 50 feet of the daycare, I move from mommy to personal assistant…and it is like they have being taking lessons from Naomi Campbell or Lindsay Lohan. My only role there is to pick-up the jackets and shoes they throw at me and then give them their school notebook before opening the classroom door.
Somehow these same kids that can’t be parted from me long enough for me to pee alone, completely forget my existence. They abandon me so abruptly once that door opens that I morph into my alternate personality (aka nice, caring mom) and I chase after them trying to say goodbye. I yell things like “See you later. Mommy will be back later. You can go and play now.” in an effort to somehow convince the other daycare moms that I wanted my kids to abandon me like a piece of dried dog poop on the side of the road.
Letting go at the daycare has taught me a key lesson: there is a fine line between wanting your child to love daycare and wanting them to at least nod in your direction before bolting off to play. Who knew?!