When I committed my family to relocating to Atlanta I knew there would be great change for all of us. One of the largest sacrifices made was from DH. He agreed to leave his position as a Juvenile Probation Supervisor for Chester County. Given current economic conditions, jobs in general are few and far between, let alone trying to find a position in government.
Always trying to make lemonade from life’s lemons, we tried to view DH’s lack of employment as a win-win. First, we wouldn’t have the added expense of a second child requiring daycare. Second, DH would have the opportunity for continued direct bonding with Jed.
My only hesitation came when I thought about Jed’s exposure to other children. Again we weighed the positive…no cold and flu season. Big win. As a child under one and the many strains of flu this past season, we were happy to keep him home. Negative, he wouldn’t have any playmates every day. Kids need other children in my opinion. They learn from each other. It’s important for their development. With Jed at home, was he developing at the same rate as other children?
I decided to look for a mom and dads group of other working parents. I was already a member of Meetup.com for Social Media, so why not expand my member interests to family meetup groups? I found a group, RSVP’d for the first arranged play date and crossed my fingers my darling boy would cooperate.
I worried about his lack of exposure to other children over the past year. How would he behave? Would he be shy? Would he be aggressive? He is part shark, ya know. What would the other children be like? Were they all in daycare?
All my worrying was for nothing. The first play date was great fun. After a few shy moments my big boy made himself right at home with many of the host child’s toys. All the children were wonderful and the co-playing was adorable to watch.
I was very lucky to find a great meetup group with children similar in age, not only to Jed, but to Baby as well. And the group isn’t just for moms, dads come too! If and when, Jed needs to go back into daycare, I can relax and know he is developing just fine and he will be ready.
Are you at home with a child instead of having them in daycare? What do you do to enhance their learning, interacting, and sharing skills?