Hello part-time Daddy Daycare and new Sitter!

Ethan's daddy loving on him before the Buddy Walk

Ethan’s daddy loving on him before the Buddy Walk

Tomorrow will mark the end of an era…Ethan’s last day with his Daddy or Mommy keeping him everyday. (It has been all Daddy, every weekday all day since Ethan got out of the hospital in April.) It is also the start of two great things, though..an awesome new sitter for Ethan on Ryan’s (“Daddy’s”) workdays AND our family of three will get to actually be together for ENTIRE days soon!

For those who don’t know us, we have adjusted from the following childcare schedules: Ethan trading between Mommy and Daddy any given day of the week. (My husband is an RN who works 3 12-hour shifts..some were on weekend days, most on weekdays when Ethan was a newborn.) I did this by working part-time with a counseling agency until we needed me to go back to work full-time. It was a very hard adjustment for me..Ethan was up on the waiting list soon for developmental daycare, and off he went for half-days every weekday. (His Daddy or I could pick him up each weekday in early afternoon, usually.) Ethan did not go to school very long before he got sick with the flu and was hospitalized for quite awhile.

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Ryan had already swapped to weekend option (working Saturdays and Sundays) in preparation for starting his masters in nursing (so we thought!) Instead of going to school (as Ryan missed the GRE exam while Ethan was in very critical condition), Ryan instead worked weekends so he could be “Mr. Mom” as my family likes to call it (check it out, funny movie you dads out there!) The main reason for this post is I want to brag on my husband, Ethan’s Daddy, again. I did it on Father’s Day elsewhere on the Internet and in person, but he deserves some major pats on the back and brownie points here..

Ryan has selflessly dealt with so many things to help our son recover and to not be exposed to daycare germs again in this time in which his immune system is somewhat suppressed (and lets face it, largely for our peace of mind because of what happened!) We don't keep him in a bubble, but Ethan so needed this time to recuperate and be close with a parent. (Mommy had to work full-time and Daddy had the option of being at home with Ethan..which is so wonderful seeing as Ethan has had so much time separated from us by either being chemically paralyzed and unable to interact with us. He had also been away from us at night and mealtimes because we couldn’t spend the night with Ethan in NICU and were not allowed to eat meals in the NICU. He has a strong attachment to us, but I would get concerned about that since Ethan has had so many separations here and there despite our very best efforts to always be by his side at home and in the hospital. (more attached to the link for those who want to know more about taking care of the hospitalized child and parent)

Here are just some of the things Ryan has done for Ethan and our family in his time as a FULL-TIME “Mr. Mom” (Keep in mind he is STILL going to be with Ethan 2-3 days each week. What a MAN, right? What an awesome husband and Daddy we have here! Here we go with the list..I so appreciate this about you, babe…

1)changing those poopy diapers and cleaning up throw up (even after you just cleaned up the dog’s…)
2)Rocking Ethan to sleep to get a nap so he will be rested for his therapies..

Falling asleep on Daddy

Falling asleep on Daddy

Ryan holding Ethan for the first time in over 5 weeks

3) Enduring Ethan’s crankiness because you had to keep him AWAKE for his therapies when they are close together.
4) Grocery shopping with a baby who is too heavy and mature to hang out in a car seat at the store, but isn’t quite stable enough to leave to his own balance while sitting up in the grocery cart cover.
5) COOKING. Yes, ladies, he did. All the time. I will share more of the load now, but I was getting my baby time in! It’s been a rough adjustment…
6) Going to the following appointments…OT, SPEECH, and PT appointments in the home several times a week, supervising and relaying information to me each night. Taking Ethan to cardiology follow-up. Taking Ethan to his well-child check-up. Taking Ethan for helmet fittings as well as Theratog fittings. (I’ll post about that later those who are interested!)
Ethan feeling icky after his 1year old shots and Daddy cuddling him to lift his little spirits. Ethan feeling icky after his 1year old shots and Daddy cuddling him to lift his little spirits.

7) Attempting to have a social life when his “weekends” had to be on weekDAYS when others are usually working or in school..toting a less than 1 year old to meet up with his online gaming ministry friends that he doesn’t see often or maybe ever.
8) Bouncing Ethan on his knee when his guy friends were over until Mommy got home. 🙂
9) Laundry, laundry, and more laundry…
10) He even made my lunch several times before work.

I know Ryan has gotten attached to being at home with Ethan all the time, but we are so, so thankful to have found a person to watch Ethan so on Ryan’s days off, he can be with Ethan! We can’t have Ethan go to developmental daycare only some days of the week (especially random ones), so this is a wonderful option for us! the therapists have agreed to go to our sitter’s home on the days Ryan is working so it is looking up!

Another great thing about this change is we get an ENTIRE DAY TOGETHER..AS A FAMILY!…on more than one occasion in a month! (We haven’t had this at all unless someone was sick or on 4th of July, basically!) What a deal! That seems like such a simple thing that we always expected, but it hasn’t happened that way in quite some time. It is something I think people take for granted and we do NOT anymore! We can’t wait!

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