Thursday, June 16, 2011

Separation Anxiety

Yep, we've hit this developmental stage, yuck! In a way we've lucked out because my mom is the primary babysitter so that transition was easy but no one else has watched Ophelia for extended periods of time which we are now paying for.

This all started last week at the gym, we got to the childcare center and as I tried to leave I had a toddler attached to my legs repeating "mama". I managed to get out and she did fine until the last few minutes when all the babies started crying so she joined the chorus just in time for me to return. Yesterday we had a repeat performance of the drop off scenario at the gym and when I returned I found her sitting on a staff woman's lap with tears. This doesn't make for a nice workout knowing your child is cursing you out in her toddler way when you leave. Today I meet with my trainer so hoping for a better drop off.

Earlier this week I made the mistake of coming home during a work day to grab a change of clothes and head out to help teach bike safety and injury prevention to 10 and 11 year olds. Ophelia was eating lunch when I got home and as soon as she saw me signed "milk". Yes I am still breastfeeding her a few times a day and this is the first thing she wants when she sees me in the morning, after work or when she's fussy. I told her she had to drink the milk in her cup, which she refused. She gave me a hug and had a death grip around my neck. I finally left figuring I was okay since my mom was there. Wrong on that. Nap time was awful, lots of crying and screaming "mama back".

This seems worse on my first day home after working a few in a row,but I have to work and things will only be worse in Fall when I'm working and completing clinical hours. I'm not going to stop using the gym childcare, I need my workouts for stress relief! If we don't figure something out soon this could be a long weekend when I travel to California next month with my team.

Parents out there any advice to get through this and make it easier on everyone?
 

2 comments:

  1. Oh man, that was so long ago for me. But I do know that it does get better.

    This is probably a bit to "old" for her. But my son will ask to take something of mine with him when he goes to his dad's for the weekend. However if she's at home with your mom...that probably won't work.

    I think consistency is key. Like you said, you are still going to use the gym childcare, etc. If she knows she can cry for 2 minutes and you'll come running, why not cry then? But then that gets into how comfortable are you to let her cry and all of that.

    Good for you for still BF. I don't know how your supply stayed through all that running. Mine started to disappear with my first when I was running.

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  2. We used to tell the kids beforehand what was going to happen (Grandma is coming over to play with you while I go out.) and a general idea of when to expect us back (I'll be back soon/in a little while/later.), asked if they needed anything first, and then we walked out and did not slow down or look back.

    It worked for our two, but every kid is different.

    Maybe doing a bunch of short separations like this (under 5 minutes, developing into longer periods of time) would be helpful as "practice" to get O ready for it.

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