Sometimes I find myself waking up in the middle of the night thinking about the daycare kids.
Recently I’ve been thinking about one of my daycare graduates. Yesterday was her first day of kindergarten. I guess that’s why she’s been on my mind, you see she’s growing up and on to new adventures.
My mind kept going back to a time I got to see her right after the family came back from maternity leave. They were dropping off her baby sister to start daycare. If I remember correctly, daycare graduate was unsure about giving me a hug. Mom reassured her that she only had to give me a hug if she wanted to, so I respected that and didn’t ask for one. Moments before they were about to leave and when I least expected it “she” decided to give me a hug. It was a hug I don’t think I’ll ever forget. She wrapped her arms around my neck, squeezed a really good squeeze, and would not let go.
Let me tell you what that hug felt like.
You know how you hug somebody you love that you hadn’t seen for a long time? Where you get that feeling that swells up deep inside your chest and you can feel it toiling with your emotions and working its way up. That’s what it felt like but it didn’t stop there. Because she was not letting go, it reached a point where a release of emotions was necessary. The tears started flowing down my cheeks. I remember looking at daycare mom waving my hand in front of my face in an effort to dry my eyes and at the same time trying to hold myself together.
As they left the daycare it took me a while to gather myself. My mind wandered and I recalled a conversation I had with my own daughter’s child care provider. She once had a parent tell her “Do not tell my child that you love them.” But the truth of the matter is we do love them, and guess what they love us too! And I’ll go ahead and say it whether you like it or not. I love all my daycare kids and they will always have a special place in my heart.
So now every time I get the privilege of seeing one of my daycare kids, I take a deep breath and prepare myself…for the snuggle is real at daycare!