Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Dealing with Other People's Ill Children

We are in the midst of something that will change our lives and it actually has very little to do with us.

I have chosen to send my kids to a private, in-home childcare provider. I was in both licensed daycare and private care and I personally preferred the private care. My babysitter was like a mother to me. I wanted the same thing for my girls. I found an excellent childcare provider who loves my girls like her own and provides excellent care.

I don't want to go into too many details but she had a baby 5 months ago who has numerous health problems. We just got word today that she has a rare, severe congenital disorder. Her prognosis is not good. I couldn't find any information on mortality but from the details I was given she is going to suffer severe complications that will likely cause her death.

I'm heartbroken but numb at the same time. I cannot imagine what K is going through. I also have no idea how to help. I don't even know how to talk to my kids about this. This baby is essentially a sibling to them. They have been very involved in her life. I also shake my feeling of guilt order having two perfectly healthy kids.

What do you say to children about the illness of a baby? What do I tell my kids about how much their daily life will probably change? When do I make the call to find another childcare provider? Do I leave everything up to K? I can't imagine she will be in any kind of shape to look after kids for some time but I trust her to make her own decision.

We are in a holding pattern right now. The girls have a backup childcare provider who understands what K is going through and is willing to take the girls for now. S is a friend of K and has also gone through the ordeal of having an extremely ill child. She is great with kids and my kids love her but I don't think she will be a permanent replacement because she already has a full house.

I am going to respect K and let her sort through things on her own. I want to help but I know she already has an incredible support system so I'm not she what I can offer her. I want my kids to stay with her as long as possible but I don't want her to feel like she has to continue looking after my girls while she is going through this. When baby was first hospitalized I sent K funny stories about what my girls were up to in order to make her smile and to keep in touch without having to discuss what was going on at the hospital but that would feel wrong now. I might still send her a text to let her know the girls love her and miss her. I don't have to feel guilty about that.

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