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Toddler Child Care: The Drop In

Toddler Child Care: The Drop In

When people first hear that I work for Bright Horizons and am able to have Liam at a center right next to my office, the overwhelming reaction is what a great set up that is. They’re right, it is great. I love that I don’t miss a minute more with him than I need to for work and can be there on a moment’s notice should he need me. I also loved that while he was an infant and I was nursing, I could nurse him at the center right before going to work and come over during lunch for another nursing/cuddle session. It made the transition to work so much easier — I only had to use the dreaded pump once a day and felt so bonded with his amazing infant teachers because of the time I spent in his classroom. Most importantly, I got to spend some quality time with my little guy in the middle of my busy work day.

While I still wouldn’t trade having him at a center near me for anything in the world, as he’s gotten older things are a little bit more complicated. Take the other day, for example. Liam’s toddler class was having a picnic lunch outside and invited the parents to join them. Since he stopped nursing and moved up to the toddler room, I had stopped coming over midday and I was thrilled to join. It was so much fun to hang out with him and his adorable toddler friends outside the busy drop-off and pick-up windows. We had a great lunch. But then, as it came time to leave and time for toddler nap time, it became clear Liam was NOT cool with me leaving him again. Of course he wasn’t, it made no sense to him. When he sees me now it means it’s time to go home. What was a lovely little lunch time visit quickly turned into an unsuccessful attempt at getting him to nap followed by a heartbreaking exit when I inevitably needed to get back to the office. After that, it became clear that I’m not going to be able to drop in for a visit right now. It makes me sad, but I know he’s better off right now not having to process me leaving him twice a day. I’m told that it comes back around and as he gets a little older, I’ll be able to come over to take him for a special lunch without (or at the very least, with less of a chance) of a traumatic exit at the end and I already can’t wait for those days.

toddler boy hugging mom



  1. MediaMom August 5, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    I feel your pain. I’ve been there too and came to the same sad conclusion myself. But I do have a little trick. Sometimes I sneak over during nap time and just look at my peacefully sleeping toddler through the classroom window (the one inside the building — not peeping Tom fashion). It’s one of my most favorite things to do actually, and I would never have discovered it if it weren’t a replacement for visiting him while he’s awake.

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