One of the hardest things I ever had to do was enroll David in daycare. He started when he was 8 weeks old and I never had any issues. My gut was telling me he was in a great place with people who cared about his well being. He was a happy baby, on a great schedule (due to his daycare provider) and my life was easier because I knew he was safe and happy.
When we had to switch daycare at 1 year I was honestly lost. I was more scared then ever because I knew how great I had it and that more than likely I would never be able to find a daycare provider that lived up to the unbelievable standard that his first provider set. But, we went ahead off a recommendation and regretted it almost immediately. He cried for almost 3 weeks every time I dropped him off. He hadn't done it before but figured it was separation anxiety. Once the crying stopped then little things would crop up, excessive days off, unknown trips in the car, closing for certain kids but not all, taking kids home after they were dropped off in bad weather. David seemed happy, it's hard when they are that young and can't express their feelings, but he was falling behind in speech and with the other indicators I knew it was time to start looking.
Here we go again - nervous as hell since obviously the second time wasn't a good experience and now I was switching this poor kid again. Routine is so important to David, it was set early in his life and he thrived off of it. He had finally gotten use to this daycare and the routine (or lack there of) that they had. No playing outside, he adjusted, running errands all day, he adjusted. He was okay with things even though I wasn't and here I was turning his little world upside down again. What if the next person we choose is horrible? How many more times are we going to have to do this? Am I going to be able to trust anyone again?
So, we switched again - it has been 5 and a half months now and David said the most glorious thing last night when I was on the phone with his daycare provider ..."Is that Mrs. Jenny?" with a huge smile on his face "I want to talk!" He was so excited that she was on the phone, he's happy and safe there. Within a month of switching he was talking, he's talking in sentences now, using large words and has caught up with kids his age. On the way to daycare he will tell me how to get there and name everyone that is going to be there. He comes home happy and telling me that they played outside all day, watered the flowers, got a "pop" (Popsicle) and he laughs. Some days he doesn't want to come home and I drag him out of there kicking and screaming. It feels good again to know that when I wake him up in the morning he isn't dreading to go to daycare, I can go to work and not have to worry, that when I get there to pick him up he's happy.
Now hopefully we won't have to worry about switching ever again and this will make for a happily ever after story!