Tonight's the night. Tonight I am going to kiss Katie good-bye right after dinner, and Dada is going to give her a bath and put her to bed. I am going to a mandatory parent meeting for our co-op preschool.
Part of me is nervous about this. The worst-case scenario would be that Katie cries for the entire 2 1/2 hours I'm gone. Probably won't happen - Dada is great at entertaining her. Second-to-worst-case scenario is that she cries a little when I leave, pulls herself together for some length of time, then loses it again when she realizes I won't be there to put her to bed. I have a feeling this scenario is pretty likely. She'll probably make it through bath and bottle, and maybe even pajamas - but I bet as soon as Dada tries to put on her sleep sack, she'll lose it.
Sigh. Well, we'll see. I'm giving myself periodic pep-talks today. I'm telling myself that leaving Katie alone with Dada is an important vote of confidence - it says to Katie that I know she'll be OK without me, and that she can handle the uncertainty of me being gone.
Furthermore, *someone* is going to have to put Katie to bed while I'm at the hospital giving birth and recovering from birth. I hope I won't have to stay long, but you never know. I dread this part so much. I am actually looking forward to labor (sorta!) and I'm so excited to finally hold our new little one. But I can't stand the idea of being away from Katie. It makes me wish she were a few years older. If she were, say, 5 years old, I think she'd understand that I'll only be gone a short time, and that no matter what, I am coming back. At 2 1/2, I'm not very confident that she can grasp those concepts.
So we're practicing, starting with Dada and working up to a babysitter. I am still searching for said babysitter. I got a recommendation from a mom at school, but we didn't really hit it off over the phone. I keep telling myself that only Katie has to like the sitter, not me! But it's really hard. I want to leave Katie with someone that I think is awesome. But - only one way to find out if this sitter is going to work, and that's to meet her in person and see if Katie takes to her.
When I think back to my pregnancy, labor and delivery with Katie, I realize now how easy it was. We didn't have to make any arrangements besides packing a bag and making sure the carseat was installed. (Carseat!! Ack! Gotta remember to buy another one!) We stayed an extra day in the hospital because we were too freaked out to take our tiny baby home with us (what will we DO with her??!!) This time around, there's so much more to worry about.
BUT - baby steps! Let's get tonight out of the way first. We started talking to Katie about it last night, telling her that Dada will be putting her to bed tonight. This morning we told her again, that tonight is Dada and Katie's extra-special fun night. I told her when I put her down for nap, that Dada would be putting her down tonight but that I'd come in and say goodnight after she was asleep. (This was a suggestion from a fellow mom at school.) I'm going to get everything ready so poor Dada isn't overwhelmed (making bottles ahead of time, filling up the vaporizer, making sure Katie's room is clean and sleep-ready, etc.) Cross your fingers for us!!