Wednesday, August 1, 2007

I left my baby in an orphanage

Oh my heavens, that was hard. I cried, he cried. He only slept for a few minutes all day. I was a basket case. I am completely overwhelmed at the administrative hell that is having a child in day care. Labels on every container with first name, last name, date (including year!). Food and milk must be thrown out in an hour if not finished. Must tell day care teacher details of everything, things I am fuzzy on myself and just wing most of the time. Involves way too much planning. And the evil cackle of processed and prepared foods at a low whisper in my ear: "you can use will be so easy...just use us...he won't"

And the waste! They only use disposable diapers, of course. So I have become a Pampers mom overnight. They change them every two hours, no matter what. The changing table must be wiped down THREE TIMES after every use, and of course the staff washes their hands all the time. More paper towels.

The staff are nice and calm, etc, but really the best HH will have is 1/3 of his teacher's time.

And the crying babies! Everywhere. Somewhere a screaming baby, at all times. And the poor staff, underpaid and overstressed. And I'm just contributing to it, to someone else being poor so I can go to work.

And you know what I did during my work time? My precious work time that I left my precious baby to have? (Ask me. The answer is really good.) I checked a table that someone else prepared for me, one that is supposed to go into a paper to be published in a scholarly journal, and found some ADDITION errors. And because of the politics of the tension between research staff and students (me) I must be very nice and thankful for every scrap of time I get from my adviser's staff. So I spent way too much time crafting a sweet email, like, I'm sure it's ME who can't add, but maybe you could please double check the numbers when you have a spare moment please and tell me how I've messed up, even though addition is obviously WRONG, you are a lovely lovely person and I'm so thankful for you, thank you for bearing with my being so DUMB etc and etc. That's what I did during my time away from my perfect baby.

What? Where are the happy hours and frivolous lunches with coworkers? The TEAM? The quote adult interaction unquote? The jovial water cooler jokes? Plates of brownies in the coffee room? The righteousness that I am contributing to The Public's Health with my Very Important Research? Where is all that?

And did I mention the eating? His teacher "reassured" me that he would "lose weight" once he started walking. Do 8-month-olds need to lose weight? Just for reminders:

And then at lunch she asked if she should start with half of what I brought him and I said sure (because of stringent food-throwing-away rules good to start with half), but keep going if he wants more, and give him as much applesauce as he wants (a big jar of grownup applesauce lives there for him, he loves applesauce). So she gave him half the food and four tablespoons of applesauce and stopped, even though he was screaming. And I came in to check on them just after lunch to find a screaming baby. She said she didn't give him the second half of the food because she thought that's what I wanted (what?), and didn't want to give him any more applesauce in fear that he would "eat half the jar." Jeepers, my baby is in the 92%tile and he eats until he's full. That's pretty much that, and I'd very much like to keep it like that. Food shouldn't have to be so complicated.

("eat half the jar".."lose weight"..give him only half the food...let my baby scream when he's hungry...grumble grumble grrrrr)

To her credit, she did seem to revise her image of him from overfed blimp to baby with good appetite. She is very nice, for real. And they did seem to bond a bit by the end of the day. But having had a "failure to thrive" baby early on (maybe I'll post those pictures when we know each other better, loose skin and chicken legs and visible ribs) I'm pretty stoked about my baby's appetite and our ability to help fill him with nutritious foods. Which I bring into the day care in this bag so how can they NOT be nutritious? Really.

I have to do all of this again tomorrow. Crap crap crapola.


the new girl said...

Good luck there, with that. I go back in September (so totally part time and with my sister watching the baby.)

Hopefully, tomorrow that bebe will get some good grub.

Anonymous said...

A day care is NOT an orphanage. Try adopting a child from a real orphanage in a real third world country and visit him or her and leave your child at a real orphanage while you run through red tape to bring your baby home. Then you can talk about leaving your baby at an orphanage.