We have come through the first two weeks of my being back at work, and we are all still standing! It has gone a lot better than we thought (or feared) it would , and credit is due once again to the little guy for being so much more adaptable and resilient than we expect. Miles barely noticed when I left the first day, mostly because he was occupied by a big mouthful of yogurt and granola (or as he calls it, ra-roh-ra) and was hanging out with Dad. Some days have been a bit rougher, so there’s still room for improvement, but overall it’s been a success.
My biggest concern with having someone other than me take care of Miles all day was how on earth he was going to nap. Miles is still nursing, and usually nurses to sleep. For the past little while we’ve had a policy that if he doesn’t fall asleep nursing at bed time, he gets put in his crib and one of us (most often James) will hang out next to his crib until he falls asleep. It works pretty well, and means that by the time I started work on April 2, he had had some practice at falling asleep without nursing. However, that strategy never seemed to work at nap time, so it was unclear how it was going to pan out. I was dreading having a kid who just didn’t nap 3 days/week, but a friend of mine (whose daughter has also not been a great napper) tried to reassure me that it would all be fine. Her daughter falls asleep with 5 minutes of singing if it’s her nanny putting her down. I wasn’t convinced that Dad or Gramma would have the same success as a Real Nanny, but had no choice but to just wait and see what would happen. Well, what happened is that James rocked and sang to Miles for approximately 3 minutes and he was out cold. Sheesh! And he did the same thing the next day when Gramma was the one taking care of him, and then proceeded to have a 2 hour nap!! Double sheesh! My worries were clearly unfounded.
Miles still isn’t too happy when he sees me getting my coat on or getting my bag ready and he’s happy to see me home, so I don’t feel totally redundant, but it’s definitely been an adjustment for me to see just how well he can do without me around all day. I love how well he’s doing, and I’d never wish for it to be harder on him, but I can’t help but somewhat wistfully remember the days when I was the person he needed. I can only imagine that this mix of emotions is going to get stronger each time he manages some new and independent step.
I don’t want to end on a sappy note though, so here’s a fun new and independent thing that he did today! (WordPress wants me to get a “video upgrade” to embed a video, but I’ve got your video upgrade right here, pal! It’s called YouTube!)