I've had a lot of experience consoling nervous moms, crying as they left their child at daycare for the first time. I was a private nanny for a number of years, worked in organized daycare setting, and also ran my own home daycare after I had my son. However, I didn't realize until last summer, when I left my own some in someone else's care, how truly difficult it is to walk away. So, when the time comes, there are some things you should totally do the first time you leave your baby at daycare.
Of course, there are also some things your daycare provider should be doing, too. When I cared for a new child in my daycare, I was sure to send photos and text messages during those first few difficult days. I knew keeping the parents up-to-date on their child's progress would help put their minds at ease. Because, well, any experienced childcare expert will know this is hard step for most parents, and that you're bound to be feeling a range of conflicting emotions. You may be both nervous at how your child will react to a new person, environment and routine, and elated at the prospect of some baby-free time to yourself. You might also have opposing views about returning to work, too. Maybe you're excited about getting back to your career. Then again, maybe you're apprehensive about balancing motherhood and work responsibilities, simultaneously and with your sanity still intact.
In other words, leaving your kid at daycare gives you the "opportunity" to experience a wide range of emotions that are sure to make you a crying, exhausted, uneasy mess. Still, and even though taking your child to daycare can be emotional, it's usually a very positive situation for everyone involved. So, once you leave your little one behind, be sure to do the following things: