Jennifer Pitt

Leaving Home Daycare for Preschool: Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Today is my 3.5-year old’s last day at her home daycare, and I have been crying all day.

The home daycare she has been in since she was a year and one day old has been wonderful. A good friend of mine opened her home to run a daycare shortly before I was ready to go back to work and it was a match made in heaven. My friend has been a second mother to my daughter and cares about her as well as I would, and as much as she does her own twin daughters. My girl has loved it there; she learned so much and made such great relationships that I can’t imagine Monday morning and not going to “Auntie’s”.

Yes, we will make the extra effort to see them (often, so let’s compare weekend schedules NOW, Auntie!!!) but not seeing them every day will be hard. Hard on everyone, actually; she decided to announce yesterday to all the kids that “I am going to my new school soon, so we can’t be friends anymore! I won’t see you anymore!” Auntie and I had a chuckle about that, but I saw the look in her eyes later that day and I know it hurt more than a little.

It was a very difficult decision to make, and I am still not even sure I have made the right one. There is a lump in my throat and my heart hurts when I think about it being her last day today, but somewhere my brain adds it’s two cents and tells me it will be ok; that she will be ok.

In an effort to get her lightly aggressive behaviour more in line and to prepare her for school next year, we decided to put her in the preschool that belongs to the school she will go to next year. We’ve been preparing her for a while, and taking her for visits to her new “school” at least once a week to help get her accustomed to the place and the people.

I have to keep reminding myself: Change can be good.

She likes it there, thankfully. Because if you don’t think the mom guilt is there when she likes the place (hint: it is), imagine how bad it would be if she didn’t initially like it there. As an adult, it’s easy to feel like changes we make in our own lives will be forever so it’s hard to realize that in the life of a toddler, absolutely nothing is forever except mom and dad. Change is ok! Sometimes it’s good and sometime’s it’s not, but the act of change itself could be the most important.

Last night we went out and picked up some little presents for her friends at the daycare, and she picked out a plant for Auntie. I bought her a completely inadequate thank you card and filled it with words that will never describe how much she has given to our family and to my daughter.

I love you, Auntie. You and your family mean the world to us and always will.

P.S. This is not a goodbye, lady; do you really think you could get rid of us that easily!??!?! <3

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