Post script – the conversation

by DaniGirl on April 17, 2007 · 26 comments

in Working and mothering

I wanted to tell you that I finally managed to find enough courage to call our daycare provider and talk to her on the weekend, but I feel sad and melancholy about it now. It’s surprisingly hard to talk about it.

I had called her Sunday morning with the intention of meeting up with her later in the day, but she was getting ready to go out for the day and before I knew it I was spewing everything into the phone. While I managed to hit on all my salient points – she’s a great person and we were priviledged to have her caring for the boys for four years; it’s not about her so much as the circumstances of too many kids, one troublesome kid in particular and the fact that she’s geographically just a little bit too far away for easy convenience now that Beloved will be taking on more and more courses and working later more frequently – while I know I managed to say all of this eventually, it was with a complete lack of grace or eloquence.

She listened rather quietly while I rambled for a while, and said she wished we had brought up more of this earlier (which twisted a little knife of guilt in my heart – she’s right, of course, but I didn’t feel like I had a lot of right to be dictating her business to her and I am in the end a conflict-averse coward). She also said the key personality with whom I was having the trouble would be leaving at the end of June, and that made me feel really bad, too.

In the end, though, she was very graceful and told me that she would only consent to any of this if she could maintain contact with the boys and see them regularly – which is of course the point at which my chest and throat seized up and my eyes started to leak. Barely able to squeeze out any more words, I told her that I was near tears and had to go but that I was sorry, and grateful, and sorry again. I barely hung up the phone before bursting – surprise – into noisy, messy sobs.

My knee-jerk reaction was fear -again – that I was making a huge mistake. The fear of the unknown is a terrible, crippling monster. It took a long, hot shower and close to an hour before I could again remember all the things that brought me to this point in the first place. But I’m still a little numb with fear that we’ve made the wrong choice, that we’re being greedy and unrealistic in our expectations, that we’ve underestimated how good we have had it and that we’re in for a rude awakening. Time and only time will answer that question.

When Beloved dropped off the boys yesterday morning, she and he pretended blissful ignorace of my inelegant call the day before. When I picked them up, it seemed we too were going to follow that pattern. At the last minute, with both boys outside and one foot out the door myself, I turned briefly back to her and said, “I’m really sorry about yesterday, about all of this. I really meant it when I said we’ve been lucky to have you.” She replied by insisting that we stay in contact, because she’ll miss the boys. After a brief hug and more inane mutterings on my part about how much we like her, I managed to get out onto the porch before I started crying again.

They never tell you when you are glowing and blissfully round of belly, busy gestating your first baby, how many times your heart will be broken by this mothering thing. In the most unexpected of ways.


{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Karen April 17, 2007 at 1:50 pm

Lovely, touching post. It’s wonderful that you’ve had such a great childcare provider for so many years and only natural that your emotions are involved (she has after all been taking care your most precious) but circumstances change and life goes on. Good luck with your new arrangements, and I’m sure your relationship with her will remain on good terms.

2 Karen April 17, 2007 at 1:50 pm

Lovely, touching post. It’s wonderful that you’ve had such a great childcare provider for so many years and only natural that your emotions are involved (she has after all been taking care your most precious) but circumstances change and life goes on. Good luck with your new arrangements, and I’m sure your relationship with her will remain on good terms.

3 Loukia April 17, 2007 at 2:07 pm

Beautiful post Dani. You certainly have a way with words… and made my eyes teary, too! I don’t have the daycare issue as of yet, but I know what you meanwhen you talk about the fear of the unknown… being a mom is one big fear of the unknown, daily fears and worries really consume you a lot of the time.

4 Loukia April 17, 2007 at 2:07 pm

Beautiful post Dani. You certainly have a way with words… and made my eyes teary, too! I don’t have the daycare issue as of yet, but I know what you meanwhen you talk about the fear of the unknown… being a mom is one big fear of the unknown, daily fears and worries really consume you a lot of the time.

5 Sharon April 17, 2007 at 2:52 pm

Hugs sweetie.
It’s never easy to change anything when it comes to your kids. Espeically when thing went so well for so long.
I’m sure your doing the right thing no matter how hard it seems right now.

6 Sharon April 17, 2007 at 2:52 pm

Hugs sweetie.
It’s never easy to change anything when it comes to your kids. Espeically when thing went so well for so long.
I’m sure your doing the right thing no matter how hard it seems right now.

7 Marla April 17, 2007 at 3:50 pm

You did your best, and all will happen as it should. You’re just fine, and I’m sure you did some excellent blubbering.
How do the boys feel?

8 Marla April 17, 2007 at 3:50 pm

You did your best, and all will happen as it should. You’re just fine, and I’m sure you did some excellent blubbering.
How do the boys feel?

9 Kathleen April 17, 2007 at 4:12 pm

Thanks for letting us know, Dani. I’m sorry it was so hard, and you felt badly about how it went.
I totally agree with you that there are all kinds of unexpected ways that motherhood hurts.
So far, totally worth it, but painful as all get out.
Loads of sympathy, and best wishes for the transition and new caregiver arrangement.

10 Kathleen April 17, 2007 at 4:12 pm

Thanks for letting us know, Dani. I’m sorry it was so hard, and you felt badly about how it went.
I totally agree with you that there are all kinds of unexpected ways that motherhood hurts.
So far, totally worth it, but painful as all get out.
Loads of sympathy, and best wishes for the transition and new caregiver arrangement.

11 Jodi April 17, 2007 at 4:13 pm

I’ve been there. It sucks. But it’ll all work out.

12 Jodi April 17, 2007 at 4:13 pm

I’ve been there. It sucks. But it’ll all work out.

13 Renee April 17, 2007 at 4:30 pm

I’m sure you said it all in a graceful way, Dani. You have a way with words, that only you don’t see.

14 Renee April 17, 2007 at 4:30 pm

I’m sure you said it all in a graceful way, Dani. You have a way with words, that only you don’t see.

15 trixie April 17, 2007 at 4:58 pm

Hard to keep your eyes forward when your heart is looking back, eh? But it’s a good sign you’re emotional about this; if it wasn’t hard to break up with your caregiver, well, then you’d have been doing your boys a disservice for a while. And you haven’t been. You have solid reasons for making this choice and every reason to believe that the next chapter will be a good one, but it’s nice that there are positive feelings wrapped up in the current relationship. That’s as it should be.

16 trixie April 17, 2007 at 4:58 pm

Hard to keep your eyes forward when your heart is looking back, eh? But it’s a good sign you’re emotional about this; if it wasn’t hard to break up with your caregiver, well, then you’d have been doing your boys a disservice for a while. And you haven’t been. You have solid reasons for making this choice and every reason to believe that the next chapter will be a good one, but it’s nice that there are positive feelings wrapped up in the current relationship. That’s as it should be.

17 Karen April 17, 2007 at 6:45 pm

I sure agree with your last paragraph. I’m now in the position of deciding when or if and how to go back to work, where to put the kids if anywhere. The responsibility of this is overwhelming and my heart breaks with just the possibility of making the wrong decisions.

18 Karen April 17, 2007 at 6:45 pm

I sure agree with your last paragraph. I’m now in the position of deciding when or if and how to go back to work, where to put the kids if anywhere. The responsibility of this is overwhelming and my heart breaks with just the possibility of making the wrong decisions.

19 BeachMama April 17, 2007 at 9:03 pm

Congratulations on having your talk with the current caregiver. I am sure it will all work out for the best when things change. As I am sure she will miss the boys terribly. Perhaps in the future she will think a little bit more before brining in so many kids.

20 BeachMama April 17, 2007 at 9:03 pm

Congratulations on having your talk with the current caregiver. I am sure it will all work out for the best when things change. As I am sure she will miss the boys terribly. Perhaps in the future she will think a little bit more before brining in so many kids.

21 jo(e) April 17, 2007 at 9:25 pm

(o)

22 jo(e) April 17, 2007 at 9:25 pm

(o)

23 Phoenix April 18, 2007 at 1:06 am

Hi there – I just wanted to say that I am enjoying your blog and hope that you will come and visit me sometime ๐Ÿ™‚

24 Phoenix April 18, 2007 at 1:06 am

Hi there – I just wanted to say that I am enjoying your blog and hope that you will come and visit me sometime ๐Ÿ™‚

25 mamatulip April 18, 2007 at 6:17 pm

They don’t tell us about stuff like this when we become mothers, do they? From one conflict-averse coward to another, I think you handled it really well.

26 mamatulip April 18, 2007 at 6:17 pm

They don’t tell us about stuff like this when we become mothers, do they? From one conflict-averse coward to another, I think you handled it really well.

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