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My anxiety levels are through the roof.

I had a lot of anxiety while on vacation and I’m still having it now that I’m back. I don’t know if it’s generally because I’m coming to the end of my maternity leave or what, but today it is DEFINITELY because I’m coming to the end of my mat leave.

I started calling daycares today.

I’ve been putting this off for forever because I just HATE the fact that I even have to put him in daycare at all. In my mind, the person I am leaving him with is immensely fat, sits on a couch all day smoking like a chimney, and hollers,

“Shuttup, I’m watching my STORIES!”

All while my baby crawls around at her feet, sobbing, with his feet entwined by loose electrical cables.

I know what I want to a certain extent:

  • I want a home-based, licensed facility. I don’t want a big centre because a) they are more expensive and b) Psychologists are actually concerned about disruption to attachments in babies attending those facilities. They’re fine for bigger kids, but for babies they’re a little too impersonal – too much staff turnover, too different from home etc. On the other hand, a kid DIED in an unlicensed facility just down the road from me and now there is a police investigation.
  • I want a caretaker that I can trust and who can serve as Babby’s other attachment figure, the way a grandmother or an aunt would in a simpler society.
  • I want someone who is flexible, because I may have to drop Babby off or pick Babby up before/after the traditional 7-5, depending on my work schedule (most vet clinic shifts are either 7 am-2pm or 2pm-8pm). Not to mention that I have no idea what days I’ll be working, or where I’ll be working.
  • I want someone who is relatively nearby, since I have no idea what direction I’ll be working in.

This last one seems to be what concerns the daycare ladies the most. One lady, when I asked if she had any spaces for September, snapped,

“Where do you live?”

I described my general location.

“You’re too far from me. I’m in [she named another city that I live on the border of]. I know a daycare closer to you that has a space.” She gave me the contact info and rung off.

Another lady was more laid back about it.

“I’m quite a drive from you, but if you don’t mind travelling…” According to her address, she was only about 10 minutes away.

My initial search for licensed daycares consisted of a 5 km span around my postal code. I’m beginning to realize that this search was too broad, but I don’t know how to narrow it down. The government website that gave me the list seems to have inexplicably quit working.

I have two appointments on Monday to meet with potential daycare providers – both Persian, judging by their names, and both “quite a drive” from me, according to them – but I looked them up on the Fraser Health website and both of them have repeated violations under the inspection list. I don’t know how normal that is.

So, to sum up:

  • I don’t know where I’m going to be working
  • I don’t know what my hours will be
  • I don’t know how to narrow down my 11 page list of potential daycare providers, given that many of them will consider themselves prohibitively far from me
  • I don’t know if I will find someone I like
  • I don’t know if I will find someone who likes me (somehow the “I don’t know what days/hours I need, I use cloth diapers, and sign language with my baby” spiel may not sell me all that well).
  • I don’t know if they will be trustworthy with my baby.
  • I feel pressured to make a decision quite quickly lest I lose a space, but am afraid of making  a decision TOO quickly and settling with someone I’m not comfortable with.
  • I don’t flipping even want to go back to work at all. I want to stay with my baby.

"Oh boy, Mommy's going to leave me with a neglectful weirdo!"