Friday, May 7, 2010

First week down

My first week back at work is over. Working was fine, but man, trying to start the routine is killer. Most nights Xtian didn't get home until 7 pm or later, and on daycare days the kids are a mess. Between trying to get everyone organized and keep everyone happy and having fun, it's a little tough right now. I'm sure we'll settle into a routine, but right now I'm a little wrecked.

Speaking of daycare, I'm having a hard time with a few things. I like the people a lot and Warren has a really good time with his friends there. But my parenting choices are at odds with theirs. It's not the big things, but they are things that make a big difference in the kids' attitudes. The big issues are food and TV. The TV is less of an issue for Warren now (he's allowed to watch some TV now, and they have the tube on much more than I would like, but Warren mostly ignores it and plays with toys.), but so far Lennox has been there 2 days, and 2 days I've arrived to find Lennox (who is 3-months old, by the way) staring at the television.

I feel like this one is easy to deal with right now. Lennox is immobile, so I just need to ask them to make sure he's turned AWAY from the TV. I can't imagine they can possibly fault me there.

The harder issue is food. I'm not a total stickler for food. Warren has had cookies and non-healthy snacks. But those are only in special/extreme circumstances. Warren's diet consists of whole wheat bread, that I bake, all-natural peanut butter, a lot of fresh and dried fruit, and a handful of veggies that he likes. Sometimes, I can get a yogurt into him. That's pretty much all he eats. But at daycare, "fruit" means pre-packaged fruit snacks that are primarily high fructose corn syrup. Juice can mean kool-aid. Yesterday Warren let it slip that he gets chocolate at daycare. CHOCOLATE TO A 2-YEAR-OLD WHO DOES NOT GET SUGAR. And yes, I've had conversations with the daycare folks about Warren's food needs.

I've mostly ignored the issue to this point. Not everyone feels the way I do, and the kids are only there two days a week. So, nutritionally, I know he's fine. On the other hand, I know that Warren's shitty attitude on daycare days has a lot to do with all the sugar and crap he's eating all day. Certainly, some of the horror can be attributed to the stress from the chaotic environment and the crummy naps he gets at daycare. (At home, Warren takes 3-4 hour, completely undisturbed naps. At daycare, I'm sure it's nothing like that.) But the multiple meltdowns in the few hours we get to spend at home before bed are horrible.

The problem is this, I can't expect them to make special meals for Warren. And if everyone else is getting a snack and Warren is left out, that sets up a nasty dynamic. Not my goal. So, there's not really a point in having a conversation about it. All it will do is create friction in the relationship, and we need this situation to continue working for a while yet. Are these two issues worth finding a new daycare? I don't know. I feel like it isn't. But I also know that the first reasonable-feeling excuse to find new arrangements, I will.

Again, it's not that I'm terribly unhappy. I feel conflicted. I like the people and I know that Warren is having fun and learning there. I hate how nasty and fragile Warren is when he gets home. And right now, Lennox doesn't really know the difference. The only impact going back to work seems to have on Lennox is that once I get home Lennox wants to nurse every 10 minutes. And that makes getting organized for the next day really hard. (Yeah, try making dinner when you get interrupted every 10 minutes and have to spend 20 minutes with a baby attached to you.)

Hopefully we'll find our groove soon. Because, man, am I ever tired.

And it'


Jenn said...

Griffin doesn't eat sugar either, and I send him to preschool with special snacks - basically a sugar free or healthier version of whatever they're having. It's a bit easier because the preschool has a set menu, so I know what the other kids are having and can provide something similar.

I don't know if it's enough to make you switch, but I'd say you are paying these folks good money to watch your kids, the least they can do is comply with your wishes!

cassee01 said...

I would def search for another place if the food thing bothers you or ask if you can send your own food as suggested above

Hound Doggy said...

First...I have no kids so I really can't relate...BUT....
I don't think your requests are unreasonable at all. What if the food issues were allergies? Would they work with you then? Then why would they not work with you now?

The TV is a little harder but they should be able to adjust a bit.

The conversation should start with something like "how can we work together with this?".

You have valid reasons and they are your kids.