One of the only things I ever want for Stella is to be adaptable. To be able to adjust to different situations without too much trepidation. I don’t want her to be timid and hide in the corner when something is unfamiliar, which is what her father did for the large majority of his childhood. I want her to be outgoing and cognizant of opportunity. And so today, she began integrating with her new daycare group.
I was informed late last week that she was ready for this next step, two months ahead of schedule. I was nervous, maybe not so much for her, but for myself. It was simultaneously exciting, and yet like a bucket of cold water dumped down your back. This abrupt realization that, while you’ve had your head down in the trenches for seven months changing diapers, your baby is transitioning to no-longer-a-baby.
So this morning my drop-off was completely foreign; I brought her to a completely different room, full of new and happy faces. Most of them much bigger than Stella, and walking. I handed her off and they placed her on the floor among some toys, which she immediately pulled toward herself. Business as usual, as I stood there wondering what her response would be to this foreign environment. Dwarfed by the others around her she seemed perfectly content, while her favorite staff member looked on, trying to reign in her emotions. Which, as I noticed this, I worked to fight back my own. We stood there next to each other, someone who has never done this before, and a grandmother who has been doing this for probably two decades, sharing that same feeling. She is moving on.