Back to school season is in full swing, once again. If this is the first time your little one is ‘flying the coup’ and heading off daycare/preschool, you might be feeling a little nervous. Will they like it? Will I be okay? Will they get the attention they need? We chatted with some of our Raised Real community members about these questions and more. Registered Dietitian, Alyssa, from Passionate Portions shared her story with us.
What was your biggest worry before sending your tiny human to daycare for the first time?
My biggest worry was that he wouldn’t been given the care and attention that I had provided for the first 3 months of his life. I knew the teachers had to share their attention, and I was terrified he would feel lonely, abandoned, or just sad without me. I knew he would need special attention for bottle feedings, since he had been exclusively breastfed and we had faced many issues with tongue tie and torticollis. He was a slow eater, and we worked on bottle feeds for a few weeks prior to him starting. We also visited the daycare with him before to meet the teacher, explain his issues, and help him feel more comfortable.
How did the first day of daycare go?
The first day was met with many mixed emotions. I was excited to be back at work to see my coworkers and show off his pictures, but I was also anxious and missed him terribly. I found out that his bottle feedings were 45 minutes, which left the teacher in a bind with the other kids. I could tell she was stressed, and I was afraid she would resent him being there. Thankfully his sweet demeanor seemed to win her over quickly, and feedings soon picked up.
Do you have any advice for other parents?
I’m not sure we could have done anything differently. We didn’t choose his issues, we sought help for them when we could, and we explained these to the daycare. We let him lead the first 3 months of his life, and although we didn’t have a schedule to provide to the daycare when they asked, I don’t regret it. I think the best advice is to be willing to be flexible and stand your ground for what your kid needs. I felt bad for the teacher having to help him through his lengthy feeds and to get help for the other kids, but that guilt was quickly replaced with the tenderness of a mother toward her child. He didn’t need me to apologize for him, but rather to thank her and to give him a hug.