Those who follow my blog know that settling my youngest son, Alexander, now 2 1/2 into nursery has not been easy for either of us.
Having spent most of the first 2 years of his life with either myself or my Mum, initially starting nursery at 2, felt totally foreign to him.
When trialling him at the nursery my eldest son, Oliver, had loved, became too painful (I went against my gut and left him too soon in my opinion, scarpering future trials), I left it a while so he could forget the difficult experience and decided to try a new nursery close to my home, taking things slowly…
The minute we both looked round, I instinctively felt this would be the right place for my boy.
That gut, visceral feeling must always be trusted.
Brand new with modern, plush interiors, one of many nurseries under that umbrella across the country, the staff were experienced but most importantly caring and kind towards Xander and all the children under their care.
Their passion and commitment to the kids there was evident on that first meeting and only perpetuated through the week I spent there daily. With everything from gardening activities to arts & crafts and sing alongs, I didn’t want to leave. I’d actually love to work there. That’s so important isn’t it? To find a place you want to be, means your kid will too.
Being a new nursery too meant it wasn’t over populated with children either so Alexander didn’t feel overwhelmed and he could take things in his stride and own time.
Overlooking the open Yorkshire countryside, we actually counted the sheep from the window where the children read, and with lots of outdoor space (kids are even encouraged to draw pictures with chalk on the grounds), this really is the ideal place for Xander.
Yesterday I left him for the first time solo.
There were inevitably a few tears when I left the room, explaining I would be heading to buy bananas (his favourites) then would come back to collect him. I’d prepped him all day discussing how he would play with the friends he’d made and read his favourite stories.
I left his favourite teddy and football with him and waited just outside the room out of sight. The crying had stopped literally a few seconds later, and when I called after 15 minutes, he was happily playing outside.
We’d done it. He’d done it.
On collection an hour later, with big brother in tow, Alexander ran to us, proudly announcing, ‘This is my nursery’ and pointing at the children, ‘They, my friends’.
It was the sweetest thing and such a relief after the previous few months.
Nursery marks a new chapter for us, a more structured work day for me, my Mum gets a little bit more free time (not too much Mum if you’re reading this) and Xander beings the road to academia and greater independence.
It was an emotional day.
A happy day.