We had one of the big ones this week. Not so much for Emily as for me, if I'm honest. We've been having some settling in sessions at a child minder for a few weeks now and today was the first day I was to leave her there alone. I was almost sick with worry yesterday and I came very close to backing out last night. Just didn't think I could do it, especially as I don't technically feel I need to.
I say I don't need to because I don't work. But realistically I work far longer hours than I would in most full-time jobs. I work 07:00 - 23:00 (19:00 - 23:00 is when I cram in as many household chores as I possibly can, and only don't count nights too because she usually sleeps through them), and that includes weekends as well. Save for that time when I had to go to hospital with an eye injury and Emily stayed with my sister, I have never "handed" her over to anyone else.
And it was for that exact reason we decided to do it. It would be good for her, to socialize with others, and it would be good for me, to have a few hours off every week (even if just to fit in appointments and other things like that!)
So this morning came and we got dressed and I told her she'd be going to Iveta's (she only goes for three hours) and that she'd be having lots of fun and she seemed to be excited about it. When we got there, she eagerly toddled in, said hi to Iveta and started playing with another little girl who was already there.
Then after a while, I summoned the courage. I went over to Emily and explained that I would be leaving for a short while but would be back and she will have lots of fun playing with her friends in the meantime.
She turned around to me, completely unfazed, waved and said "Bye, Mummy!"
What's an emotion that is a mixture of relief, surprise and pride? I'm not sure a word exists, but if it does, that's what I was, and am.
I spent the next few hours calmly browsing shops on the High Street (I refused to go home and do chores or waste time, this needed to be ME TIME), and then I stopped for a drink and a snack in a tiny cafe that I love but cannot get into with a buggy! Perfect.
I feel like I've done something big today, for both of us. I'm so relieved and so very happy.
(The picture is of her on our way back home. Tired, but very pleased with herself!)
[Update: A couple of weeks later, Emily had become very clingy and was waking up several times at night for cuddles and resettling would take up to two hours. Knowing we would be leaving for Malta in a few short months and this was therefore a very temporary thing, we eventually decided to keep Emily home as it just didn't seem worth the upset for such a short time. We will later focus on helping her settle in a place in Malta that she will be able to enjoy for more than a few months.]
This blog is now closed. The story continues over on Flip Flops and Flying Carpets.
Thank you for reading.
Thank you for reading.