Oh my, where to start about the last week..
So following our intro sessions we had 2 full days at nursery prior to me actually starting work. The first one went o.k, Mabel managed a short sleep but seemed
fine although absolutely knackered by the time she got home.
Then the second was a bit up and down. Mum and I made the most of the rare opportunity to be without any responsibility and went for a shop in Leeds. I dropped her off, leaving a bottle since her sore teeth were stopping her eating.
Around mid morning I rang to check how she was (in true first time parent style). The reply came that she hadn't eaten her breakfast and had only had 20 mins sleep which was in a pram since all the beds were busy. When I asked whether she had then had a bottle instead I was told no but they would give her one over lunch if necessary.
Now this left me a bit irritated since I really want her to settle and have consistency so on the 2nd day to be in a pram was annoying. I had that horrible feeling in my tummy and literally wanted to just drive home and pick her up. However, Mum was very good at counselling me on the need to keep some context. I was absolutely jumping to all sorts of random conclusions. I liked that it was a small nursery, knowing that there were just a couple of baskets (research points to them as good for babies to sleep in). And I had no idea whether she was even wanting food - just because I am a feeder (adults or children to be fair, I am well known for force feeding) doesn't mean it is right.
To make things worse, when I arrived to collect her the sheet we receive every evening on her day said she had eaten all her breakfast and slept for 40 minutes. I did try and question why the difference but didn't really receive an answer.
I found it really difficult to know how much to say. On the one hand I want it to be right, she is the most precious thing to us in the world, but on the other I am aware we are trying to build a relationship with the nursery and work together to get her routine right. I basically didn't want to just pxss them off. Hmmm tough call.
But it left me feeling really uncertain and disappointed.
We decided that since it was only the first week to let it go and see how this week went - in actual fact it has been much better. She has slept in her basket every day and we are now up to an hour in the afternoon. And despite still being exhausted end of day, when I collected her yesterday I was greeted with a big smile and cuddle before she crawled off to continue playing. And at the end of the day I would rather they were engaging with our child than filling out paperwork.
And for me going back to work has been a very positive experience. It has been fab to see all my work friends again, I am looking forward to new challenges from my slightly different role and despite of course missing her terribly I have really enjoyed using my brain and the rest that comes from not looking after a baby full time.
So I have learnt a few things this week...
- The world of childcare does take a little time to adjust to - for both us and Mabel
- Part of this is letting go of control and building trust - I fully appreciate that second time round it won't be nearly as hard!
- It isn't wrong to discuss concerns and talk to them about how that first week was for us, but perhaps not in the heat of the moment - so when the time is right I will give some constructive feedback.
Oooh giving some feedback, you see I am right back into work mode already!!!