herald

Monday 20 November 2017

bugged at creche by sickly coughs and sneezes

"How is the creche working out?" friends ask me. "How does it compare to hiring a child minder?"

Well, it depends on the individual child minder and the creche. If you have a child minder who smokes, has the TV on all day and throws packets of sweets at your tot to keep him quiet while she chats on the phone, then maybe a creche is a better option. It can be costly, but wonderful for social development. Three months ago when my son Gary started playschool, aged just two years and nine months, he had few words and I could barely understand his baby babbling. Now he and I have full conversations!

If you only have one child, he is in danger of thinking he is the king of the universe, because, in a way, he is. In the creche, Gary is taught to share and interact with others.

A downside to the creche is the fact that my son always seems to be sick. Then he passes all his germs to me. People did warn me that this would happen. Kids under the age of three in a creche pick up every bug as they haven't built up their immune system. But it breaks my heart to see Gary's eyes watering, his nose running and hear his constant coughing.



infection

We've been to the GP four times already this winter. Right now he has an ear infection and a high temperature. He and I are at home spluttering, sneezing and wheezing!

I am looking forward to when he gets better and can go back to playschool. I take him on the bus with his Thomas the Tank Engine school bag and he is excited as he strides into class and greets everyone. He has made friends with a couple of the other boys, and the playschool owner has suggested that Gary has a soft spot for one of the little girls, which, of course, my son has refused to confirm!

I just wish I didn't feel guilty about the fact that he's always catching infections. A fussy eater at the best of times, when he's under the weather, he sometimes refuses to eat point blank.

I told a friend of mine that Gary and I have been sick for the past few weeks. She assured me that it is normal and that when he starts real school he won't be as sick as other children who have not attended playschool.

"I think boys get sicker than girls anyway," she added.

"Like man flu?" I asked.

'That's right. Man flu. They tend to start early."

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