There was once a saying “it takes a village to raise a child”
This saying rings true and is something I feel is relevant today still. Where once mothers would band together and live in tribes, Now you’re left by yourself once your partner has to go back to work after their 2 week statutory parental leave. Oh how times change…
Sure, there are parent and toddler groups you can go to – but you’re still in charge of your child and you don’t really get a break. Especially if you’re subjected to not being in ‘the click’ or mum guilt has a grip on you because your child would rather a chocolate biscuit than a piece of fruit for snack time.
Here is where nurseries come in!
I’ll be honest, I couldn’t blummin’ wait for William to start! When he was born, I was told there was a waiting list for nurseries and I should get his name down for one as soon as I could. Woah…Hang on a minute. I’ve just pushed this 9lb baby out of me, I’m not thinking nurseries yet chump!
And yet, that’s the reality of it. The waiting lists are crazy long. So when William was 6 months old I took the plunge and popped his name down on a waiting list for nursery. Initially, I opted to put him in at 2 years old for 5 half days. His 2nd birthday came and went and I hadn’t heard anything. It wasn’t necessary for me to send him to nursery, as I am still a stay at home mum, but I thought it would greatly benefit him to be around other children and get a bit of a routine going!
I popped my head in over the last few months to see if there were any signs of a place coming up, and each time was a no. In hindsight, I am grateful that he didn’t go at 2 years old, because I’ve enjoyed watching him grow as a person and see his personality develop. However. The past few weeks (months…) he has started the phase into a “threenager” and the attitude and behaviour I’ve been getting off him is unreal. So at the start of this school year I went into the nursery and begged* them to find him a place.
*asked really nicely, exaggeration ok? Mentally I was on my hands and knees begging. My voice might have even cracked a little…
I love William with all my heart, but with all the nerves in my body, he knows how to get on every. single. one. Both he and I were ready for this next step. He was getting bored at home and I was losing my sanity with him.
And then the blessed day came. I returned home last week to a letter in my letterbox for ‘the parent/guardian of William Berney’ and I knew what it was instantly. The Kids must have thought I was mad as I jumped up and down in the hallway with glee. I opened it up and saw William had been allocated 2 half days at nursery. Amazing!! This is going to benefit us both greatly!
So today, Monday 5th November, William officially started nursery. Lily and I had prepared him this morning by explaining that “William is going to school!” – Lily called it nursery and he frowned and said “no, schooo!” So he’s a big boy now and goes to school – not nursery! He hoiked on his backpack and off he trotted out the door.
We popped in the morning after a little mix up of us being told he was afternoons and them having him down for mornings. He wanted to play in the waiting room where there was a toy, and as the door opened to the nursery I pointed out there would be more toys – and he willingly obliged to come with me asking “where toy?? Where toy??”
We walked into Williams nursery room and off he went straight to the cars and trains, didn’t even give me a second look! I grabbed some paperwork, quickly glossed over his likes/dislikes and general bits with his key worker (who is now called “sissy” – her name is Sam…) I kissed him and said bye and that was it! He kissed me back and said, “okay…bye…” I was on standby in case they called me to say he wouldn’t settle, but I knew he’d be fine.
11.45am came round and I went to pick him up. He saw me and gave me a big cuddle and a “BABA!!” (Mummy!) I implied it was time to go and he cried “no!!” – safe to say he had a blast and didn’t want to leave the toys. He had so much fun!
On the way home he told me all about it, he played with 2 buses, trains, cars and an aeroplane – and he saw their chickens outside! It made my heart burst – I wanted to cry to be honest. (Of happiness that is!) it just made me so happy that he could tell me all about what he had done in those few hours and how excited he was about it all. Roll on tomorrow for round 2!
It’s funny, I know most parents don’t want to part with their little ones, and here’s me waving William off with a big grin on my face. As I said before though, he is so ready for this stage and it would be unfair of me to hold him back anymore. (And I need a break.) It does make me sad to think my baby is growing up, before you know it, it’ll be school applications and sleepovers and *deep breath* …girlfriends! (I’m getting ahead of myself.)
It has opened my eyes to hug him a bit longer, kiss him more often, not lose my temper so easily with him, get excited at what he gets excited at more, because he won’t be this little forever. And it’s hard to comprehend this until you’re waving them off to be without you.
I’m sure tomorrow will be just as successful as today. Nursery is a go!