"We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us." - J. Campbell

May 1, 2008

As much as I do try (daily) to remind myself of all the upsides to having E in an in-home care situations, there are sometimes downsides as well. Vacation time is one of those.

We've known since the middle of last year that Sarah, our care provider, was planning on taking two weeks of vacation in 2008: the week of May 12th and a week in August. The August week isn't a problem for us (we're on vacation ourselves, anyhow), and we've sorted out a plan for the May week (Josh and I each take one day off, my mother drives down to watch him two days, he spends one day with Josh's dad). But now Sarah has thrown a wrench in the works, and its a frustration.

She wants to take an extra week, in June. She has basically offered us three options: make other arrangements and we don't need to pay her; bring E to her house where she will arrange for "someone else" to cover her for that week (but we don't know who, and, in the past, at least once she's had her 19 year old cousin cover for an hour, which I was not ok with), or decline to give her permission to go (since we didn't know about this in advance). Well, far be it from us to be the bad guys, so we're going for the "make other arrangements" option, but its frustrating. (Partly its frustrating because I started this new job in February and haven't yet accrued much vacation time, but even if I had five or six weeks of vacation time it would still be frustrating, because its not my choice.)

In a center, of course, this wouldn't have been an issue - staff would take vacation and then come back, and although E's routine would be changed it would not be totally interrupted. E is, by now (having been "in care" since he was 8 weeks old) used to the routine of "going bye-bye" each day. He's getting used to weekends, but things like this - extra days or changes in his schedule - can really throw him off and make him into cranky savage toddler. I think by the end of this week in May he might very well be a total mess.

I've spent a good deal of time this week looking for some alternate solution - checking to see if our local YMCA can take him for a full week, for example, or seeing if we could find someone trustworthy to care for him in-home for a week, but so far, no luck.

On the other hand, a patchwork solution is better than no solution at all. I'm constantly aware of how lucky we are, to have such a great support network. I'm always so painfully aware of all those folks who do not have the resources we have.

And, of course, it means I get to spend a spring day doing an assortment of nothing with my favorite person on Earth. And what can be wrong with that?


jenne.heise said...

* hugs * to you in preparation to dealing with a toddler whose routine has been disrupted.

Just remember: practicing dealing with changes in routine will make him better able to deal with changes in routine. :) (Not that that thought is all that comforting when you are dealing with screaming, unhappy child, of course. Thus the sympathy.)