I have a ton to update on work/school, but I’m about to crash for the night and need to keep this succinct. So here’s an update on Avery starting her new daycare.
Leaving her long-term daycare friend and her provider was sad. There were big hugs, real tears, and varying degrees of understanding about what was happening among the kids. Because we had been talking a lot about the fact that it was her last day with these people before starting at the new preschool, Avery seemed to get it. The older kids got it. When I picked Avery up at the end of her last day, everyone had red eyes it was all I could do to choke back the tears. Avery has been going there – and building a best-friendship there – since she turned 1. It was her first place to spend time without me outside of our home. It was hard to leave.
But we had the whole weekend to process our emotions and get geared up for a new experience. So sweetly, that weekend Avery played a lot with toys her old provider had given her, and chose to add books to her bedtime routine that she’d gotten from her old provider. I guess when you’re 3, one weekend is long enough to feel nostalgic about the life you had 3 days ago 😉
On Monday morning my wife took her to the new daycare. She gets dropped off early – at 7:30 – so she was one of the first kids there. She cried, but wasn’t inconsolable. Very soon a little boy was dropped off who was more upset than she was, and she took it upon herself to help him. She made fast friends and made herself feel better by making other feel better on their first day. That’s how she started her friendship with her old daycare bestie, too…
She didn’t cry all that first day, until I picked her up. When I hugged her she let everything out that she’d been holding in all day. But actually, after the cry, she was pretty happy. She told me about all the fun things they did, and was looking forward to day 2.
The next day was great. No tears. But she also got sick that night. So for the rest of the week she was stuck at home with us… Today she was back again, and she had a blast. They take a walk through a nearby forest every day, where they play on a fallen willow tree. Her favourite toys are the wooden animal blocks. She’s not sold on the vegetarian meals yet (didn’t touch the lentil stew…), but she’ll get there.
I think this place is a great combination of mellow and wild. She can be her mellow self and go at her own pace, but in a wild environment of outdoor space, freedom to move about as she pleases, and LOTS of kids to be friends with (we had told her there would be 9 kids at her new daycare, and she promptly corrected us after her first day, saying “there were only 8 other kids. With me there were 9.”
So bottom line, we’re happy with the change. I still look back at pictures from her old daycare and feel sad that her relationships built over the majority of her young life were ended so abruptly, but we’re not sure if it’s worth trying to schedule a playdate with the old friend when there are so many new friends to be focusing on…