Thursday 20 April 2006

lost light

Yesterday, a 10-month-old girl died after choking on some food at a nursery close to our office. My friend/workmate's daughter goes to this nursery, and was in the same room as this little girl. This is way too close to home.

I already experience enormous amounts of guilt about leaving Jack in the care of virtual strangers four days a week, and always felt tentative about entrusting his safety to girls who look no older than teenagers. When my friend got the call to pick up her daughter because there was "an incident" at the nursery, I wanted to get in the car and take Jack home. It's the complete lack of control that scares me the most; I simply have to trust that Jack is being taken care of properly while I'm at work. That's a lot to gamble on. On the other hand, things are not always in control even when I'm around. This morning, I turned around to find Jack leaning forward and holding on to both sides of the baby gate at the top of the stairs - which was wide open because I forgot to close it. My hands shook as I picked him up, and I cursed myself for being so incredibly stupid. Maybe sometimes he is actually safer in other people's care.

Last night, as I cradled Jack and sang to him before he fell asleep, I became too overwhelmed to continue. I could only stare at him and hold him tight, knowing that someone else would not be holding their baby that night.

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