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To my fellow daycare parents, thank you for not judging me

I understand that all mothers have different realities in different seasons of their lives. For me, right now, I am a full-time working mom with a full-time working husband and two little boys. We bring our children to daycare. This situation is what works best for us right now.


Four years ago, when I found out that I was pregnant with my first son, Henry, I had no idea that you had to put your unborn child on a waiting list so they can actually be accepted into a daycare by the time your maternity leave is over.

I started putting him on lists when I was six months pregnant—which I thought was totally reasonable—but found out the hard way that I was too late.

I called my older sister to talk about how crazy it was that I might not get my baby into daycare on time. I jokingly said that I should probably go ahead and put him on a list for preschool, too. She was not joking when she said it might not be a bad idea.

I ended up finding out that my son was accepted by his current babysitter the week before I went back to work from my eight-week maternity leave. I was so happy to get that phone call. I knew I was going to go back to work, and I knew I needed a daycare provider—but I didn’t know what I was going to do if he didn’t get accepted into any. So, needless to say, I was 1000% relieved when I got that phone call.

Fellow daycare parents—the finding the perfect fit, and making sure your kiddo gets in struggle is real—am I right?

But we did it. And I am so grateful that you’re the parents who daycare alongside me. So thank you.

Thank you for not judging me. Thank you for getting it. Thank you for understanding. And thank you for being right there with me.

Thank you for not judging me when my 3-year-old shows up in his pajamas because I didn't have the time or will power to argue with him over getting dressed.

Thank you for not judging me when I sent that same 3-year-old to daycare with pink eye because I thought his eyes were just swollen from allergies.

Thank you for not saying anything when I’m picking my kids up with swollen eyes because I had a horrible day at work and cried all the way to pick up.

Thank you for being friendly and polite at drop off but never trying to have a full conversation because we are probably both about to be late to a meeting.

Thank you for telling me that I had my sweater on inside out before leaving to go to said meeting.

Thank you for sharing your snacks with my kids because I was in a hurry and forgot to put the Cheerios in the diaper bag.

Thank you for not judging me when one of my kids has to be peeled off my body because they don’t want me to leave them. But I have to leave.

My fellow daycare parents know how hard it is to be a full-time working parent.

They know that having young children and managing work and life in general can be more than just hard, it can seem impossible at times.

They know that we all try really, really hard to be the best parents we can be, but we feel like we fall short sometimes. Probably more often than we would like to admit.

They know that I honestly believed my 3-year-old did not have pink eye and that I would never have sent him to daycare if I had known.

They know that I had no clue that my sweater was on inside out.

They know that it was a really bad morning if my kid shows up with his footed pajamas on.

They know that switching from work-mode to mom-mode in 15 minutes on the drive to pick the kids up might be the only time I have all day to cry over my bad day without anyone else around.

They know that I like them and they are great people, but I don’t always have the time to chit-chat. Lord knows I would love to, but I run on a tight schedule.

They know that I never purposely forget snacks and that I have and always will share my kids’ snacks with them when they forget, too.

But most of all, they know that I don't judge them either. Because they also have bad days.

So thank you, fellow daycare parent. Thank you for not judging. Thank you for sharing. And thank you for understanding how hard this life can really be.

Who said motherhood doesn't come with a manual?

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