For about the fifth time in his short life, Dillon is changing babysitters. To put it mildly, that really sucks. Trusting someone to watch your child for the majority of their day is a huge thing. To keep having to find someone new to trust really bites.
We have been fortunate to have wonderful private sitters who watched Dillon and other kids in their home. However, long term commitment seems to be the big issue here. I don't blame them! I would not be sane if I had to watch mine, and other people's, children all day for a few dollars an hour. Not worth it.
We decided to go with a daycare.
I drove over to THE daycare in town Tuesday afternoon right after babysitter #4 told me she was entertaining thoughts of going to work. I am no fool. "Entertaining thoughts" means that she already has a job and is probably starting next Monday.
At the daycare (not the only one in town by far, but an established one with a great reputation), an older lady sat behind a desk in the front office. She invited me in kindly and listened to my story.
Clutching Squirmy Dillon, I spilled my guts about The Demise of the Private Sitter. After listening, she furrowed her brow and said sternly, as if I had planned to be so lackadaisical about my son's care: "You know
we have a waiting list. We probably can't get him in till at least June. And no place in town has an opening for someone his age."
Well. Gimme a ray of hope here.
My heart sank. Squirmy Dillon squirmed right out of my lap and toddled around her desk.
I told the lady to put us on the waiting list, and to please call if she had an opening sooner than June. Dillon peeked around the corner at her. He laughed and tugged on his fleece cap. "Babagabedeeededdedebeeegaga," he said seriously.
The woman laughed, and commented on his round, pink cheeks.
Then she said, "Lemme see what I can do. Maybe we can get him in sooner. He sure is cute
Stunned, I gave her my information and left.
She called today, and asked me to come back this afternoon to tour the classes. Of course, I went over right after school. I put on lipstick in the car and smoothed my hair, cause it was drizzling outside. She met me at the door.
"Where's the baby?"
"Oh, he's still at the sitter's. I figured this would be easier... um..."
She was lasering me with her eyes. "It would be nice if you had brought him. I want to see him in the classroom!"
I tucked my tail between my legs and scurried to the car. I went to the babysitter's to get Dillon. I wiped his nose and tied his shoes. I put a fresh diaper on him. I felt so nervous for him. It was almost like an audition.
Thirty minutes later, my hair was frizzy and my lipstick was off. But Dillon was in a fine mood, and was ready to turn on the charm.
Ms. Baby Interviewer let us in the office. "THERE he is! Look at that face. He is so happy! Let's go see the classroom. Oh, come here sweetie!" She lugged Dillon around and I followed, clutching my purse.
She put him down in the classroom and let him play. She took him outside to show him the playground. "He is so good natured!" she exclaimed.
"Umhmmmm..." I said, not sure of what you are supposed to say. I almost wanted to start the circus routine of tricks:"Dillon! Where is your belly? Where IS it? Show me! Good! There it is! There it is! You are so smart! Now, where are your ears? Ears! YEAH! Those are your ears! Good. Now turn in a circle! Hop on one foot! Lick your elbow!"
He seemed to have passed with flying colors. Ms. Baby Interviewer gave me a packet of information and told me she would call me tomorrow. She is pretty sure she will have a spot available for him on the 29th.
I have learned something. Dillon did audition today. Here is the way it works, probably EVERY TIME they have a new applicant.
First, she told me there was a huge waiting list to instill some fear and panic. She saw that Dillon wasn't ill-behaved, and he is pretty cute to look at. Plus, she found out that I have a steady job that gets out early in the afternoons. This started looking better to her. She dangled the carrot of a possible opening in front of us. Today, Dillon and I came back. She saw that he is pretty well-behaved and cute on two different days of the same week
, and so it wasn't just a fluke. She "pulled some strings" and found a spot for him. Now I feel indebted to her, and will never complain or inconvenience his caretakers because I am so grateful for the sacrifice they made on my behalf.
Yeah, we got played. But I don't care.
He is worth it.