Sunday, August 20, 2006

The Friday Saga

As you have probably gleaned by now, I have had an incredibly crummy day this past Friday. It was supposed to be busy, not horrid. Here was the intended schedule: 1) Mandatory pre-employment drug screen, 2) return computer equipment from previous failed contracting gig, and 3) tour a daycare facility. And those three things did happen, just not exactly according to plan.

The drug test went fine, BTW, other than the embarrassment of having to drink 3 glasses of water (the maximum limit) and wait and hour before I was sure I could give a large enough specimen. Never mind that I had gotten up 2 hours before I needed to be there so that I could pee first thing in the morning (no way I'd make it there without going after sleeping all night) and drank lots at home. Apparently, I have a "shy bladder." Fun. They swear it is very common, but that didn't really make me feel much better. The lady who actually helped me was much nicer than the woman who checked me in, so that wasn't bad, but still. Anyway, the hour wait made me significantly later getting home, so I had to now choose between shower and lunch (had chosen not to shower this morning so I could sleep a little later, thinking there would be plenty of time after my "five minute" test). Plus more chainsaws next door (they had dismantled the tree, but hadn't cut it down into removable pieces), so Luke didn't nap after trying for 30 minutes, thus was tired and cranky and whiny when I arrived home. Given my mood at that point, I chose lunch, since I still had more running around to do (I'd showered around 4 PM the previous day, so not as bad as it sounds). DH said he'd make fish sticks, since they only took 10 minutes. He forgot to account for preheating the oven, and this is a completely different brand and type, so he was shocked when the oven temp was different (needed to be higher, so more waiting) and the time to cook was longer. Didn't figure this out until they were supposed to be ready and they didn't look done. Joy. [snort] They finished just as I had to leave to meet the guy to return my computer equipment (have new equipment from new contracting company arriving Monday), so I grabbed 3 fish sticks and ran out the door, snarfing them in the car on the way. The meet-up was fairly near my house, 15 minutes away or so (better than the hour away that he usually is; he just happened to be on this side of town for another meeting). Met him at 12:15, with plenty of time to make my daycare tour at 1.

Except they had the road between daycare and the place I was meeting him down to 1 or 2 lanes (from 4) in THREE different places, which I didn't know until I was on my way there. It was on the other side of the road, which was great for meeting him on time, but sucked for me trying to get to the daycare on time. Traffic was backed up for over a mile *beyond* where I turned to get off, so there was no way I could go back that way and have any chance of being on time. I used every ounce of back roads knowledge I had. Thank God I lived over that way for so long (our old apartment), or I'd probably still be sitting there! So I bust my butt to get to the daycare on time (arriving promptly at 1 PM, I might add), and the assistant director who is supposed to meet with me and give me the tour is not there. "She ran to the bank, but she should be back in about 5 minutes." Okay, I can buy that. She knew I was coming at 1, she left in what should be plenty of time to get back, but got held up. We all know how banks are. No problem.

30 minutes later, and I am still waiting, as is another couple who came in after me to fill out paperwork for their child who would be starting the next week. Both of us have 1 PM appointments with the same woman (how precisely does that work?), and both of us are still waiting. Then came another couple with their 4 year old. They had called about an open spot in Pre-K, and the person they spoke with around 12:45 (same woman who was not there at the time) had said to come on down right then, knowing (since the woman said she had told her) that it would take them about 45 minutes to get there. At 1:40 (when I had mentally given them until 1:45, and then I was leaving), one of the teachers comes up front and offers to give me a tour, since Paula (the missing lady) was not there. Which I appreciate, but #1: why did it take 40 minutes for this to happen, and #2: it should really be Paula doing it. Why is she still not here, when she had two appointments for 1 PM and essentially booked another for 1:30? As we are reviewing some of the security features up front, someone takes a phone call, then announces "Paula is running errands and she'll be back about an hour from now. She knows you are all here; that's why she called was to check on you. Do you mind waiting?" Hell yes, I mind waiting!!! What exactly do you think I've been doing for 45 minutes now?! So I took the tour with the teacher, and briefly discussed what each class did, but I got almost none of my questions answered between being annoyed at being kept waiting (stupid me for not making a list, and in my frustration I forgot what I wanted to know) and the fact that it was a teacher doing the tour (not of Luke's probable class level, even) and not an administrator, so she didn't know about some things (like the waiting list, of particular interest to me at this pint).

I'd been home less than 15 minutes (Luke had *just* gone down for an afternoon nap), not very happy about the way I was treated, when the phone rang. It was the director of another daycare place I had contacted a few days earlier. Oh good, I thought. I get another bite at the apple today for daycare, since the first one hadn't gone so well. Little did I know....

I asked if there were slots available, and she said yes she had one, but there were four other people she was interviewing for them, so she really doubted that I would get it. She had a very condescending attitude and was very snooty. Then she started asking questions about Luke (why, since you have essentially already said he won't get the spot?). "Has he ever been in daycare before?" (No.) "What kinds of skills does he have?" (Um, well, he's not even 2; what kinds of skills is he supposed to have?). "Can he say the ABCs, identify all of his letters, and count to 100?" I'm sorry, what?! I thought she had misunderstood when I said he was two; maybe she thought I was asking about Pre-K II (for children who did not turn 5 by the state deadline, so would not start "real" kindergarten until next year). So I said, no no, he's only 22 months. And then she proceeded to lecture and *scold* me about how far behind he is and how I need to devote my time to making sure he gets caught up before I bother sending him to daycare. "The youngest child I keep right now just turned two, and she can identify all of her letters, say her ABCs, and count to 100, and she is starting to read. You really need to read to him and do flash cards and things since he is so very far behind."

I beg your pardon? How DARE you criticize the parenting skills of a perfect stranger, especially one who is attempting to do business with you (though obviously not any longer). Not only was it rude and uncalled for, but this was after she had already told me she pretty much didn't have anything open, so what business was it of hers? I was literally speechless, I was so angry, and I all but hung up on her and then threw the telephone across the room and started bawling. I was hurt and angry and embarrassed and stunned; I already cried myself to sleep the night before at the thought of putting him in daycare (heavy with the guilt that I'm sure all moms feel), even though I am 99% sure that this will be better for him, and then this woman basically calls me a terrible lazy mom with a stupid child because he's not ready to enter 3rd grade at age 2, and acting like I'm an idiot because I don't know that *all* children are like this. And no amount of logic and knowing that she was being unreasonable was helping at that particular moment. It had already been a crummy day, I was already emotional about the whole daycare thing, I am already stressed about my first day on the new job being Monday and not having anything promising in the daycare department, and then this. It was just the last straw.

So I posted to one of my stitching boards, simply asking how many people had children who could do all of this before age 2. A few said theirs could, but most said theirs could not (or had only just started working on *some* of those skills). Someone asked me if I was being told that Luke should be able to do all of these things, and I spilled the story about the rude lady. Which was immediately followed by all kind of "that woman is a nutjob" type comments, which was very comforting. A few people who work with challenged children (thus are well aware of what skills are appropriate for what ages) posted lists for me to compare Luke to, and I felt a whole lot better. At that point, I just needed some reassurance that it was *she* who was crazy, not me. Luke has a pediatrician appointment in six weeks anyway (his 2 year well visit), and I know she will ask about such things then. She already mentioned getting him tested the last time we were there, which is fine. I *know* he is a little behind in the verbal department, but late talking runs in my family, and DH recently admitted that he was considered a little slow and behind through about first grade. Hmm... let's see. He graduated top of his class in high school, and he was by FAR my strongest competition in college (and I'm talking in calculus (six of them), physics, and engineering classes), usually beating me academically (but not always, LOL). So I'm not overly worried.

Anyway, such was my Friday; the rest was pretty uneventful (the usual dinner out (Wendy's this week) and grocery run, followed by finishing off Firefly: The Complete Series on DVD). The weekend has been much improved! Today's highlight was an almost-3 hour nap, and yesterday, I got to pick out my belated birthday present: new ruby earrings to replace the ones I lost a little over a year ago. Any weekend marked by long naps and new jewelry has to be great! LOL

Here's to a better week!

Currently feeling: shiny


  1. {{HUGS}}

    Woman sounds like a nutjob to me. I think Marcus is pretty smart and he can't do those things. I also don't think he needs to at this point in his life. (He counts beautifully at the moment - 1,2,9!)

    Neither of those daycare centres sound like places I'd want to send my kid. The lack of responsibility for commitments would concern me about the first and as for the second...

    Hope this week's better.

    Hugs to all of you.

  2. Erin, you want to know what M 'studied' on Friday? Flashcards *snicker* How's that for irony?
    I'm glad to her your weekend was wonderful. Jewelery and a nap - Heaven!

  3. I totally agree with Kerry. Neither one of those places sounds like places I'd send my child either. If they are that noncommittal about keeping appointments for TOURS, how are they going to be about adhering to feeding schedules, medications, etcetera??? As for the second, that woman is a dare she criticize your parenting skills????

    On another funny note, I thought I'd mention to you that I too have a VERY shy bladder. It got to the point at about my fourth months in my pregnancy that I had to start taking home pee cups from my OB for the next appointment, and then I would collect my first morning urine and take it in with me to the office. Hassle yes, but SO much easier than just sitting there trying to squeeze out a few drops! (Granted, I know you can't bring in your own pee for a drug test...I just thought you would find it funny that there is another person out there that can't pee on command either!)

    Hang in there,'ll get better!!!! I don't know if they have Primrose Schools in Georgia, but we've been very happy with Primrose!

  4. Hope your first day is going well!!!!

    I am still so mad at the daycare lady (well, now, both of them). I really hope you find somewhere awesome. And I think there are Primrose Schools by you - at least I know there's one in Kennesaw (which makes me think there might be others. Obviously you aren't driving all the way up there each day).

  5. You were more patient than I would of been, 15 minutes and I would have been out of there, especially when I discovered she had double booked as well. I would also write a note to them telling them about your experince, like to the ownere if you can(like you don't have enough to do). I think if more people complained, nicely of course, maybe customer service in general would improve.

    {{{hugs}}} Luke is fine, you are a great mom, and fingers crossed you find a place that is right for both of you!

    And a very belated congratulations on the new job. I'm kind of jealous....

  6. You are a great mom!! That woman is insane. M is 2.5 and she can only count to 13 on her best day. She can say her ABC's, but only by memory, not by reading them. As I told Erica, childhood is a journey, not a race. All things in their own time!

  7. What a horrible day! I agree with everyone else... neither place sounds like anything Luke should be anywhere near, and that woman sounds like the worst hyperactive pushy-pushy parent ever. I feel very sorry for any kids she has.

  8. That's awful! And count me in with the others too, what a nutjob (or the worst kind of competitive, pushy person there is).



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