Pinched

August 11, 2011

(I’m not saying I’m resuming blogging. But this one I had to share.)

Yesterday when we were walking out of daycare, Mrini kept protesting when I held her hand. She had a small scratch on the back of her hand and it was hurting. I took her other hand and it was all fine.

By the end of the day, Mrini was end-tethered – which expression is my personal shorthand to say that she was at the end of her tether. “Mrini is crying because she didn’t sleep in the afternoon,” explained Tara, helpfully. Amit gave her a bath and she came out howling even more loudly than she had been when she went in.

“What’s the matter?” I asked.

The scratch on her hand was hurting. In an attempt to get her to stop wailing and start talking, I asked her how she got hurt. “Daycare Auntie pinched me,” she wailed.

I was shocked. I’d expected her to say some kid did something to her and then I’d have told her these things happen and that would have been that. The girls don’t normally come home with cuts and scrapes from school and daycare, but a few war wounds in the cut and thrust of life are to be expected. I don’t worry too much. Kids learn to sort these things out themselves.

But an “aunty” inflicting an injury was a different matter altogether! Adults just can’t do that – especially not adults entrusted with the care of little children. At least my kids can talk – and even then, we almost didn’t find out about this. What about pre-verbal kids?

It wasn’t any too easy to get any coherent information out of Mrini, but it gradually emerged that the Aunty had been angry because Mrini wasn’t sleeping. I asked her if the Aunty meant it or if it happened by mistake, and she said quite clearly that the Aunty meant it. We promised her that the Aunty would be spoken to and that she needn’t feel scared if she didn’t want to sleep at daycare, nobody was going to hurt her for that. And that she should tell us if any such thing happens again. Then we let her sleep.

The Aunty named by Mrini was not, of course, the main daycare coordinator, but one of the staff. We called the coordinator and spoke to her. If I’d spoken, I’d have certainly been quite cold and stern (even though I like the daycare coordinator a lot) but Amit spoke and he was much too mild. All the same, she got the message. She will look into the matter, she said.

It’s difficult to know what to make of the whole episode. On the one hand, I want to take my kids right out of that daycare. On the other hand, that would be over-reacting. The place is generally good and I’m sure the coordinator will take up the matter with the Aunty in question. Hopefully, the Aunty will realize that she can’t get away with such things. At least some kids can talk.

On the one hand, it’s such a small, tiny little thing. On the other hand – it must have really hurt, to have someone pinch your hand hard enough to break the skin. Poor Mrini – she must have wailed!

And there’s the sheer injustice of it. We have instructed daycare clearly that while it is desirable for our kids to sleep in the afternoon, if they don’t want to, they don’t want to, and they are not to force them. Mrini has not wanted her afternoon nap for several months already. Sometimes she does, sometimes she doesn’t. So the staff just have to handle it. Usually, I think, she lies in her bed and probably babbles to herself – that’s what she does at home, at any rate. If she is disruptive with other sleeping kids, the staff have to deal with it. Pinching her, hurting her – is just not acceptable. For an adult and a caregiver to resort to these kinds of means… I just don’t know what to say.

But then – when kids think they have been punished, they don’t want to talk about it. In a way, it’s understandable – you want to hide your misdeeds from your parents and only tom-tom your achievements. The trouble is, these silly little things can’t evaluate when the punishment is way out of proportion to the purported mistake. This is how so many abusers get away – the child always thinks they did something wrong and are ashamed to talk about their “punishment”. Who can tell them that certain kinds of punishment are never, ever appropriate? Luckily for us, we have twins. If one gets into trouble, the other always reports on it. But this time, for instance, Tara was asleep when it happened. All she knew was that Mrini didn’t sleep.

There’s one other aspect that is a little worrying. Children do make up things. Mrini was extremely tired and cranky when this story came out. Tara couldn’t validate it. It is possible that Mrini made it up. I don’t think she did. Not because she can’t – she can – but because it just didn’t look like she was making it up. She wasn’t joking, she wasn’t playing around, she wasn’t even making a play for sympathy. In fact, she had no reason to expect sympathy for a story like this, this being a first. Normally, we’re very, “ok, come on, get over it” about minor injuries. So it’s probably difficult to pinpoint any precise factor and say, this is why she isn’t making it up. I just feel she isn’t. But I can’t say 100% for sure that she isn’t.

Now what? I’m certainly going to follow up with the daycare coordinator. And I’m going to tell both girls (again) that if any of the Aunties intentionally hurts them in any way, they are to tell us right away. And beyond that, I think we may not do anything. We probably aren’t going to take them out of this daycare tomorrow. But we will be keeping a very sharp eye on the kids.

And so begins the paranoid-psychotic cycle of parenting. The end of innocence. Sigh.


Daycare is Our Village

February 23, 2011

It takes a village to raise a child, they say. I think they knew what they were talking about.

Sending the kids to daycare was never what I intended to do. No, I planned to keep them at home, like most other kids, while I went back to work. I had Shaba-aunty who I thought would be happy to look after them. She was already in charge of giving them lunch and putting them to bed for their afternoon nap. And if she couldn’t oblige, there was her sister, our cook, NJ. Both were women who’d worked with us a long time. They were trusted, dependable, sensible, honest, and clean. What more could anyone want?

As it turned out, neither of them could oblige – they both had too many other things to look after. So we reluctantly gave up on homecare and looked for a suitable daycare. I’m so glad we did. The truth is, one single, solitary nuclear family is too little for a child, even for two children, even for twins. I’m in no way advocating a joint family as the solution. I’ve seen what happens when our kids get thrown in with a bunch of family members. Discipline goes out the window. They think they can get away with murder and they can. There’s always someone who’ll take their side. And Mom and Dad become the only two who are at all interested in trying to impose some kind of discipline, some kind of schedule. We end up being the ones always trying to get things done. On time. Properly. And we – at least, I – end up screaming and losing my temper (and my mind) over it.

Don’t be under the impression that I often have to deal with this situation. It’s very rare. But it’s enough to give me a glimpse of how it could be.

Homecare that involves paid domestic help is better, because you, the employers, get to call the shots. It doesn’t mean that things will always be done the way you want them to be, but at least you can try. You can unplug the TV. You can ban chocolates and biscuits. Paid domestic help will not, presumably, spend too much of their hard-earned cash buying sweet things for their charges and thereby risk earning their employers’ wrath. The same cannot be said of grandparents. Or even uncles and aunts.

But homecare is essentially boring for kids, especially for kids of this age. Every day, day after day, it’s just the two kids and the one care giver. There’s just a small selection of games and activities that two kids and one adult can enjoy. There’s only a small selection of books and toys. Anyone would be bored after a week or two.

Daycare, on the other hand, is a good combination of the two strategies. We haven’t been able to completely eliminate TV and sweet nothings from the twins’ diet with daycare. But it’s not too much of either. And discipline is not an issue. There are several aunties who give the instructions, and they don’t brook any nonsense. There are more toys and activities than you’d normally have at home, and with so many children and adults around, the possibilities are infinite. Besides, unlike in a house, in daycare, every child is one of many and nobody gets excessive attention. This is good. The kids get to play together a lot with other kids of slightly varying ages. It teaches them to work out a lot of things on their own – taking turns, order, fairness, discipline. But there’s always help at hand should adult intervention or organization be required. Another wonderful thing about daycare is that, you don’t have to depend on just one person. With homecare, if your care giver calls in sick, goes out of town, or has any other reason for being unable to come, you’re stuck. With daycare, there are always helpers around. It doesn’t matter if one or even two of them are absent on any given day. Daycare goes on.

So daycare is sort of the village that raises our kids. And they’re doing a good job of it. When our girls went to Calcutta with Amit and without me for several days last week, by all accounts they were absolutely comfortable, self-assured, confident, and easy-going. It helps that they already know the people there, of course – but just to keep that in perspective, they are only four-and-a-half now and their last visit to Calcutta was more than a year ago, in December 2009. Still, they handled all the ups and downs of travel, the bor jatri (baraat – a five hour bus journey to Durgapur; overnight halt; and five-hour drive back), the festivities, the lots of new faces, new food, changes in meal and nap schedule, and everything else that goes along with such a trip – they handled it all with elan and without the slightest sign of missing mama.

In retrospect, putting the kids in daycare was the best thing to do. The time will come when we will have to take them out of daycare, as school hours get extended and the girls get involved in various classes and activities. But for as long as we have it, it’s a godsend. I wonder why I ever felt reluctant, unsure, or guilty about it?


They Totally Missed The Bus!

December 14, 2009

Kids really are amazing.

In a conversation some days ago, sup33 mentioned what her daughter’s to-be school principal had said: kids are much more hardy than parents think they are. They have more stamina, more energy, and are more adaptive than we give them credit for. My own kids have proved this to me many times already, yet they still surprise me.

When I was much younger – not a child exactly, but growing up – I was scared of being left at school. This actually happened once, when one of my parents turned up a little late to pick me up – I must have been 6 or 8, or possibly even 9 years old. But much later, even up to the age of 16 or so, I used to have anxious dreams of being left at school. In those days, I went home by school bus, and I had a constant, though mild, paranoia of missing the bus. My recurring dream on this theme lacked the intensity of a nightmare, but it was definitely a worrying and anxiety-laden dream, and one that persisted for a while even after school itself – or at least the school bus part of school – had come to an end.

We started the twins on the school van ten days ago, just before we left for Pondicherry. I went with them for two days, and left instructions with their teacher, the van driver, and the daycare attendant that from the following school day, they would come on their own, unattended.

Then, the weekend intervened.

And we went to Pondicherry.

And by the time we returned and sent the kids to school on Wednesday, something got lost in transit between the school teacher and the van driver and the kids didn’t get on to the bus (or in to the van, in this case).

It was my last day of unemployment, and I had spent the morning getting their lunch ready. I drove to their daycare with the intention of greeting them as they got off the van, to ensure that they reached safely and were not unduly worried about the commute, and also, at the same time, delivering their lunch. I had just about reached the place with a few minutes to spare, when Amit called.

“Where are you?”
“I’m almost there, at their daycare,” I said.
“Ok. You have to go to their school right away.”
Naturally, thoughts of illness, accidents, and other possible calamities flooded into my mind.
“The van didn’t pick them up.”

First I called the van driver. He was unperturbed. He had thought they were starting from tomorrow. In any case, he was already quite far from school and couldn’t possibly go back to pick them up. So I called daycare, updated them, called Amit back, updated him, and set off on the long drive to their school.

I was tense – were they very upset? Were they scared? Lonely? Crying?

I knew that their teachers would not leave them, that they would keep them engaged and do their best to allay their fears, but… Just a couple of weeks ago, Mrini had been in tears fearing I wasn’t coming to fetch her, and I wasn’t even late that day. And just this morning, Tara had said “don’t go,” and clung to me tearfully, while her teacher tugged her away and assured her that mama would come early today to pick them up. And I hadn’t turned up! What trauma they would be experiencing!

So I drove blindly, stupidly, preoccupied with these thoughts. Narrowly escaping various catastrophes, I reached school at 12.45 to find… two perfectly happy, laughing, playing, children who greeted me with “hey, what happened to the van?” (or words to that effect). Not a word of complaint or a single teardrop in sight.

Huh. So much for all that worrying. Why on earth did I think that my childhood fears, which I had forgotten all about until now, would be their fears? They were in a familiar environment, they had their teachers, their work, their friends. One of the things with Montessori is that older kids – up to 5+ – are in the same class as younger kids (3+). The older kids get to stay back for an extra hour or so, so by the time I reached, the seniors still hadn’t gone home.

And then, of course, there are the two of them. Although that more than doubles their naughtiness and all the mischief they can get up to, it also means that each of them is very rarely totally alone.

I greeted them unconcernedly, as though my turning up was just a special bonus for the day, and we drove to daycare, and they were somewhat late for lunch but none the worse for it – despite the fact that they’d returned from a hectic trip out of town and had an extremely interrupted sleep last night. They both slept in the afternoon (thank goodness!) and were in top form that evening.

One good thing that came out of this entire experience was that something that would doubtless have worried me eventually – the prospect of the twins missing the bus – happened even before it had occurred to me to be worried about it. And once the worst has happened and has been handled, it loses its fear factor. I know now that if they ever miss the bus in future, their teachers will call us, and either of us, wherever we are and whatever we’re doing then, will drop everything and rush to pick them up. And until we get there, they will be in their school, with their teachers and friends, and they will be fine.

Still, overall, they are just amazing in how adaptable they are. They’ve just been two weeks in daycare, and that’s been interrupted by a change in daycare, and a trip out of town; but they’ve settled down with a minimum of fuss and are absolutely cheerful and positive about the whole thing. Tara had taken to fussing a bit when we dropped her off at school in the morning, but today she told me with great determination that she was going to go “quickly” into class, and she did – she waved to me and went off smiling!

I still have twinges of guilt at how much time I’m going to be spending away from them… but it’s worse when they make it so easy for you.


Day Care: Do They Care?

December 1, 2009

So we had decided on this daycare for the kids. You know the one – big, fancy, expensive, dead convenient, being in the same campus as both our offices… We bought ourselves a three-day trial period. Well, I still have only a verbal offer and the entry load at this daycare was coming to something over 80 k for the twins, so a trial period definitely makes sense, right?

Right.

The kids clearly liked the place. It’s large, well set up, clean, has nice child-sized toilets (clean) and places to climb and things to jump off of. Oh and there were these toy car things they could drive that they fell in love with. They didn’t talk to anybody much there, but as long as I was giving them lunch and they could play with the toy cars or climb and jump off things, they were ok.

Amit and I weren’t so easily impressed. Though the place appeared very professional and everything, I felt it was run like a factory. There was nothing really bad about it (apart from the food; I’ll come to that later) but there were small, niggling things that weren’t quite right. One or two of the attendants didn’t seem to be the kind cut out to be working with little children. One attendant had her own child there and this skewed things. She could not give her daughter sufficient attention, but neither could she treat her like just another child there.

There was a general one-size-fits-all kind of approach there that I felt was not exactly suited for kids of this age. One day, they twins were all happy and excited and showed no signs of wanting to sleep after lunch. The attendant’s response? “Oh no, they have to sleep, or they will disturb all the other kids here.”

I mean, yeah, she has a point, but shouldn’t there be some other solution? Like giving them something to do, or taking them to another area where they can play?

I heard a couple of the other attendants threatening the kids with “if you don’t fall asleep right now, spider will come.” If there’s one thing I want to protect my kids from, it’s from this kind of pointless threatening and fear-phobia approach.

The kids were all put to sleep on mattresses spread out on the ground. For a place as large (and expensive) as this one, you’d think they’d have sufficient mattresses. They didn’t – the kids were crammed together about five on a mattress. They could hardly move.

And then there’s the food. These folks actually discouraged us from sending food for the kids because (one size fits all) they provide food. We saw the menu, and I wasn’t impressed. Kids need proper meals – fruit, veggies, dahi (curd/yoghurt), in addition to the staple dal-rice. They need fibre in their cereal – unpolished rice or whole wheat, not just white rice. Still, I thought, maybe they do actually give all that on the side, they just mention the main dish on the menu. After all, they can’t be giving only rice and sambhar, or only paratha and curd. Our girls are used to five-course lunches. We even give them non-veg – or at least egg – once or twice a week. But no, they said, you can’t send any non-veg. Ok, I thought, let’s see what their food looks like. Maybe it looks really healthy, with lots of veggies hidden in the sambhar or in the raita.

No such luck. The food on the plate looked a lot worse than it looked on the menu. Pulao and raita (rice with mixed veggies and curd with raw veggies like onion) looked to me like white rice, plain (thin) curd, and a few green peas tossed in for colour. Sambhar-rice looked like rice with thin, colourless dal.

What’s worse, on our first day there, they gave the same food for lunch and for the tea-time snack! On our second day there, lunch was the same as on the first day. There was a five-year-old at our table who commented on it… so at least we know that they don’t actually usually give the same food every blessed day. But hullo! How about adding some nutrition to this food? These guys are supposed to be in the child care business.

Afternoon snack was also horrifying. One day it was biscuits, another day it was rice kheer (rice pudding). Refined sugar, polished cereal. How about a little fruit? Or at least good old bread-n-jam, which is at least better than biscuit, especially if you make a real effort and get wheat bread.

I had thought that since they provide food, I could just send the fruit and veggies to supplement, but after seeing what their food looked like, I realized I just couldn’t.

So anyway, I packed them lunch every day. Only, the food is cooked the evening before, refrigerated overnight, and packed when I go to pick them up from school around 11.15 a.m. So it’s still quite cold when they are ready to eat around 1 p.m. So, heat it, right? We have this useful little box called a microwave, which is killing the environment but we all use it just the same, right?

On the second day at lunch time, their attendant told me very firmly that, sorry to say, we need the microwave to heat the food for the infants. So could you please send their food at a ready-to-eat temperature? Thank you very much.

When you’re giving a place 80 grand, you’d think the least they could do is to buy a second microwave, right? Yeah, right.

When I told Amit this, he was disgusted. It was Friday afternoon by this time, so we spent the weekend and Monday morning phoning around, and on Monday afternoon I dropped the kids at this daycare, then drove off to inspect another one nearby. It was a much smaller affair, homely – not actually a home, though it was based out of what was originally intended as a house – far from perfect in terms of the infrastructure, but somehow cosy and warm. Because it was a house in design, there was a small outdoors area with a small sandpit; the big, plush daycare had no outdoor area at all, so this was better than nothing. The toilets were adult sized, fitted with child seats. The dining table was in the kitchen. There was a fridge and a microwave, and the woman in charge had no reservations about using either. There were about ten kids, and three caregivers. They didn’t provide food, for which, after our first experience, I was thankful, and they had no problem with us sending non-veg for the kids. The woman also assured me that I needn’t send any fruit as she always had fruit available for the kids. This, of course, put this place way up there at the top of the list as far as I was concerned.

So today I dropped the kids off at this new place and sweated it out in the car outside all afternoon. The woman was very keen that I not hang around for long, as she said it made it more difficult for kids to get settled in. Tara was somewhat upset when I left, but by all accounts she quickly settled down, ate lunch, and proceeded to play the entire afternoon. This was not a problem – the sleeping kids slept in another room with the door closed and were not disturbed. When I went back in some time around 4.30, she was completely happy and at-home there, and didn’t bother too much about me.

So, all in all, this place seems more convincing than the other. Amit and I both really liked the person in charge (while we found it difficult to like any of the women at the first place). It is a ten minute drive away from our office complex, unfortunately, but perhaps that is a small price to pay?

And there is a smaller price to pay in a very literal sense as well – this place costs less than half of the other on a monthly basis, and has none of the entry barriers that amount to 80 k in the other place. So it makes sense to go with it for a while and see if it works, don’t you think? After all, the place with only one microwave and plenty of attitude isn’t going anywhere and we can always go back there later on if we wish.

The kids have put up a sterling performance in all this. They’ve been almost unmitigatedly cheerful and easy-going. Despite being left alone this afternoon at this new place (and Tara being a little upset by it) they were all ready to go back to the first place at the end of the afternoon, just so they could play with some of the toys over there!

I still feel a little selfish for wanting to go back to work… but I think that eventually the girls will begin to love day care (as they already love school) and that it will do them no harm in the long run. Or at least that’s what I want to believe right now. I just hope we’re doing the right thing and choosing the right daycare. It is so hard to trust our little girls to somebody else’s care.


Change…

November 25, 2009

The kids don’t know what’s in store for them. They know something is coming, but they don’t quite know what. They know I’ve been going for “job interview”s and that I want to go back to “work”. They have heard Amit and me discussing daycare, but they don’t know what daycare means. I’ve told them they’ll be going to a second school soon, it seems to have got Mrini a bit worried. Yesterday, when I went to pick them up from school, she was sobbing in the teacher’s lap – most unlike either of them to behave like that. She saw me and greeted me with an absolute flood of tears. It turned out that she had been worried that I wasn’t going to show up. I wasn’t late, really, but some of the kids had started to leave, so she got worried. Poor little thing.

Today they had a class picnic. Wow! A picnic! My kids went out with a bunch of friends and not a single parent went along! They went in a school bus for the first time, they went to a strange place (a park of some kind, I gather) and somebody else took them! I don’t know about them, but this was a big thing for me. Given the uncertainty in the air with my new job and all, I thought they (or at least Mrini) might be worried about where they were going and all that, but they came back looking ok. I was waiting on the sidelines as the school bus drove up and disgorged the kids – the twins got off separately and walked off without seeing me. Tara was fine, though a bit confused (as always); Mrini had a slightly worried expression, but when she finally saw me, she smiled. If she had been really anxious, when she saw me she would have cried. So that’s ok. They didn’t say anything to me at all about the picnic, which is sad, because I’m dying of curiosity… but I suppose it will come out slowly.

And tomorrow, they start daycare. The first few days are on a trial basis to see how they take to it. If they seem willing to settle down and enjoy it, then we’ll have to shell out a horrendous amount towards enrollment, and three months’ fees.

The saddest thing about this daycare is that by the time they get home, it will be too late and too dark for them to go to the park. They don’t know it, but the era of park outings every evening with their gang, the Famous Five, is coming to an end.

Actually, the era of the Famous Five would have ended anyway, with the two boys going off to a distant land in a couple of weeks’ time. But the twins don’t know about that yet either. They so look forward to meeting their gang every evening in the park, it is going to be sad having to explain “goodbye” to them. At least daycare will give them a new set of friends, albeit in an indoor environment. The boys who are moving away, on the other hand, will have to get used to a new home, new country, new everything. They’re a few months over two, they’ll adjust quickly. Soon, they won’t even remember their gang, the Famous Five. It’s still sad, though.

It’s going to be a tough couple of weeks, as I spend long afternoons at daycare getting the kids used to the place. It would have been easier if I didn’t also have an Archaeology assignment that needs to be completed before I start work. But I know that it’s only a matter of getting over the bump – things will get easier with time as we all settle down to the new regime. I hope.

And then, soon after, sure enough things will change again.


Playschool? Already?

September 18, 2008

It’s been a difficult and tiring time, the past couple of weeks. Let’s see: first there was my parents’ visit, short and whirlwind; then the trip to Pondicherry, even shorter and just as whirlwind. Then Amit left on the first of many business trips planned for this winter, so I was left to be completely housebound for a week, with the kids hanging on to my apronstrings the whole time; this is never an easy thing. (Yes, I know generations of women have done this effortlessly and uncomplainingly, but all the same, it’s not an easy thing for me.) Then his father was suddenly found to have cancer! It’s in an “incipient” stage, and surgery has been scheduled for Saturday, so Amit left for Delhi today, and we don’t know when he’s going to be back (but we do know that it’ll be in time for his next trip abroad in the first week of October). So it’s back to house-arrest for me with immediate effect. No tennis, I’ve already cancelled various social engagements for the weekend that I was quite looking forward to, and I don’t know how – or if – I can make it for my weekly music session on Sunday.

On top of that, it’s admission application time at various schools (for sessions starting next June!), which means somebody has to be out and about, picking up and dropping off application forms at various places. Not to mention filling them up, writing covering letters explaining why we can’t provide birth certificates, getting (making, actually) passport-size photos of the twins and so on.

Since every outbound activity is contingent on Amit being home with the kids, and since he is therefore finding it tough to keep abreast of his office work, I decided it was high time we bit the bullet and tried some alternative baby-sitting arrangement. So I phoned the nearest Playschool/Daycare/Preschool/Creche that I’d heard of, and if all goes according to plan, the twins will be attending from next week or, at the latest, next month.

It’s a tough decision, not made any easier by the feeling that I’m being forced into it due to Amit’s constant travelling, rather than opting for it because of any conviction that it’ll be good for the kids. I have this nagging feeling that they’re still too young for any kind of school. But I’m also not happy about leaving them in the hands of some ayah – unsupervised – at home. Yet, I do need time to go out and run errands, buy groceries, and, if at all possible, get some exercise while I’m at it, and it’s difficult enough to manage all this even when Amit is in town to hold fort at intermittent intervals, much less when he isn’t.

There have been another couple of recent developments as well. One is that I have, very quietly and rather tentatively, started on the next module of my online archaeology course. Quietly and tentatively because, the last module I did was just after the kids had come home, and I didn’t fare very well in that, obviously. I don’t know whether I can do any better this time, but I feel that finishing what you’ve started is perhaps even more important, if a little less satisfying, than doing well.

So I’m hoping that some of the days when the kids are at Playschool I can use the quiet time for accomplishing something on that front.

The other thing that happened recently was that I got a job offer, an actual, firm offer, not just a vague and airy-fairy suggestion, for a part-time position away from home. In many ways it sounded tailor-made for me, especially as getting out of the house was one of the things that attracted me to going back to work. But I turned it down, because I just couldn’t face the prospect of dumping the kids in daycare for so many hours (about 6) each day. Perhaps, as another mother pointed out to me, the kids adjust quickly enough, it’s only the parents who fret. Still, having them eat and sleep and wake up in a strange place with strange people around them, not being there to hold them when they are all sulky and grumpy after waking up, not being the first to witness each new word and antic, the very first time it occurs…

It made me think really hard about what I wanted and how I proposed to get it. It looks like, with all my conflicting desires, I’ll probably have to settle for a work-from-home job for the next several years. But even for that, I’ll need some form of daycare and I’d really rather not to have an ayah hanging around all day. That would only irritate me and make me itch at all the things I hear her saying and doing that I wish she wouldn’t.

So the playschool/creche arrangement looks like a better option, if it works out and the kids take to it and settle in. Still, it feels like a big step, and I don’t feel that Amit is quite in favour of it and I’m not entirely sure myself… Is there ever a right time for this?


%d bloggers like this: