Saturday, December 11, 2010

Big changes afoot

This is a complicated post. Maybe grab tea before trying to read?

I have been on the hunt for childcare for Sally. Ugh. How do you choose? I asked some local friends for their recommendations and had a few names to try. The advice I got was to turn up unannounced and explain that you wanted to have a look. So I did that. And to go with my gut.

Well I did that. The first one I went to - well, let's just say that I wanted to go there myself. They have dirt. And gardens. And chickens and bunnies. And attachment theories. And lots of play equipment. Healthy food. Carers holding babes as they slept because they felt safer there. Patience.

And a 6-12 month waiting list. Sigh.

The next one I went to, was different. No natural light. No grass - just fake grass. No sky either. Just big sunshades. And the redeeming feature offered to me by the office manager was that they were recently enrolled in a new formula trial.

But I could get in immediately.

Sigh. Ugh. Fuck. SUCH hard things to find someone to do some of the raising of my child. Because that's what I think childcare is.

So I had to look very closely at why I need childcare. I have to renew my first aid certificate which will take a day. I am blessed to have friends who would help me out with that. But I also have to do a metric fuckload of placement next year to finish the groundhog day / never ending story / degree that never ends. Yup I'm enrolled to go back to school next year to finish two subjects to finish it. They are two 1/2 semester subjects though, so lots of work, and LOTS of placement. And TheHusband can't take enough leave to cover all of it. And I have to finish this damn degree next year.

The other thing is that Sally LOVES to be around other children. Especially childerbeasts of her own age. Loves it. And it'll be fabulous for her to have a carer beyond me and TheHusband. And stimulation and so forth. Plus having 2 days to do stuff is going to be interesting. I don't know what I'll do with myself but I'll tell you about it.

Anyway, the complicated part of this is that I feel, ever so urgently, the need to push on and finish this degree so I can move on into the industry. Or not. I have that small dream as well - to do my breastfeeding counsellor and community educator training with the Australian Breastfeeding Association, do a doula course and some childbirth education work, do more photography, and then go and do everything except register but do some work still with women and birthing.

You see, homebirth is under attack in another forum with the decision yesterday of the Supreme Court that the assistant coroner can investigate a stillbirth because there were signs of life. I can't imagine how traumatic those words would be for a mother to hear that her child had signs of life, when she has made some kind of peace perhaps with the past and that her midwife did all she could to help her birth the baby alive. But from a midwifery point of view, this is world-changing. When someone is mentioned in the same decision as manslaughter because they attended a birth that ended badly, it makes me stop and think about whether this is a situation that I want in on as an independant midwife.

I got into this when I didn't have a plan B (hell I didn't even have a plan A!) and now it looks that I might need another plan.


MayerMomma said...

Hi, I'm an Early Childhood Educator in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada and I recently began reading your blog. I feel inclined to comment because I know how important quality child care is. In the place that you mentioned with the waiting list, I would suggest you place your name on a wait list as soon as possible. In Canada, simply being on the waitlist does not commit you to the space once it's available but they can call you when a space becomes available. Also, perhaps the wait list is not so long if you're only looking for a few days per week? If you end up needing to make other arrangements, at least you can change your mind when a spot becomes available. Based on my experience, the one with the wait list seems much superior. The piece of mind leaving your child somewhere you feel comfortable is important and will allow for you to concentrate on your studies will ensuring your childs happiness. :)


Georgie said...

Childcare *is* tricky.

Why not at least put Sally's name down at the centre you really liked, and then sit down and think about what your other options are. You might get lucky and a spot come up sooner rather than later.

Anonymous said...

Can you sign up for the waiting list on the excellent center (and call to check in once a month), and just put her in the lesser day care while you wait?

Then as soon as the great one has a spot you pull her from the middling one and put her over there?