When I returned to work in 2013 my husband and I decided Hudson would attend childcare 4 days a week. I had heard good things about children socialising and learning to be independent. I also heard that kids get sick but it would build their immune system (it didn’t seem like a big deal). What no one told me is that son would turn into a walking petri dish of bacteria and we would get every single virus imanginable for months in end.
At one point we were at the doctor’s so much I thought we should invite him to Hudson’s 1st birthday party as a guest of honour, for helping us survive the 1st year of life.
I received endless calls to leave work to collect my sickly snot monster and for the first 6 months back at work I don’t think I worked a full week. We would sit at the doctor’s for hours, there were many sleepless nights and most of my pay was spent at the chemist.
I then spoke to other mums who have had children in childcare and they revealed that they also had the exact same problem and it was just as bad. Why on earth had no one told me that it was like this? It was almost like people gave me a PG Disney version of the story, when it’s really a R rated horror story. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t have changed my mind about putting Hudson in childcare but I would have at least been prepared and stocked up on tissues, humidifiers and purchased a lot of shares in baby panadol.
Probably the worst part was that my husband and I were also getting sick. So, we had a serious case of extended man flu in the house with a poor upset little boy and a tired mummy. Not a great combination.
The good news is that Master Germy (Hudson) now has a pretty good immune system. He loves childcare and the second year was much, much better. The bad news is that I plan to return to work in June this year and my 6 month old daughter Scarlett will start childcare. I guess the process will start all over again. At least this time I will be ready and can batten down the hatches for when the dirty little germs come knocking.