This is in response to Sandy's post here. The short of it: The transition for babies is harder on us parents than it is on them. Below I offer some real mom tips.
First, let's take a walk down memory lane:
- We got pregnant
- Moved out of the boonies into an apartment (because I couldn't imagine driving an hour back and forth with a crying baby)
- Needed to find a daycare by the apartment until we found a house
- Found an awesome daycare through a friend that was literally five minutes away from the apartment
- Had another baby
- Bought a house 20 minutes away from the daycare (because the apartment was getting cramped)
- Needed to assess our driving/daycare situation
The daycare the girls' were originally at I ABSOLUTELY adored. Ryan and I absolutely LOVED the teachers. The girls were so loved by the teachers, and they loved them back 🙂 It broke our hearts to tell the ladies there that we were moving them. When we did tell them, everyone started crying - even us.
When we found out we were going to be moving to a new area, we took a tour of the new daycare, made sure we loved it, and put the girls' names on the waitlist right away.
When Ryan and I toured the new daycare, we loved the facilities and the teachers. Even more so, we loved the fact that it was 3 minutes away from our house. However, the fact that it was close to our house was also a problem. When we need to take them to a doctor's appointment, I have to drive all the way back home to pick them up, then 15 minutes back into town to see their doctor. But aside from that, the daycare was perfect for us! What was also great was that our daughters would be growing up with the kids that would be in their grade level! How awesome is it that they'll have friends when they start school? Pretty awesome if you ask me.
My worst fear with this daycare move was Ansley's transition. Aubrey was young enough she wouldn't remember, but Ansley was 15 months at the time. She knew these ladies since she was 12 weeks! I asked around about how to make the transition easier. Let me tell you - everyone tells you something different.
One recommendation said: On the first day at the new daycare, stay with the child for 30 minutes so he/she can transition.
Second recommendation said: On the first day at the new daycare, don't stay with the child because it makes it harder on them.
So which is it professionals? What's a momma to do with all this conflicting information?
I then asked another teacher at a kid's learning center. They said:
We see this transition often. You are correct that most of the time the children are very resilient and seem to get into the routines quickly. We try to share the routines with the parents prior to the transition so they can be aware of the routines and help the transition.
As a parent, our children seemed to transition much better than we did as parents. They were able to adjust to the new teachers, the new children and the new routine much better than we expected them to. We just did not give them enough credit 🙂
I would suggest talking with the teachers at your new center and seeing if they have any suggestions or will share their routine with you prior to starting. You could also see if you could visit the center with your child to help the adjustment go smoothly.
Well, I heeded this advice and those of the new daycare teachers, and I left right away. It was harder on me I think. Every day for three weeks, when I dropped Ansley off, she fussed. She whined. She cried. She ran to me. She wanted me to hold her. Aubrey - she didn't care 🙂
Then on that third week, it was like a light switched. She ran to the teachers happily in the morning. She didn't cry for me anymore. Crazy right?
What's even crazier is that I had to pick up some tax forms at the beginning of the year at the old daycare. Coincidentally, Ansley was with me as I picked them up. The old teachers were excited to see her. What's hilarious about this is when I let one of her favorite teachers hold her, Ansley freaked out and started crying. Short term memory? Yep.
Needless to say, my tip is: Its harder on you than it is on them. It will take three weeks weeks for the transition (give or take), but babies are resilient.
You've gotta end a post with a photo. So here's a random self-portrait phone photo: