“Can you interview Ed Burns tomorrow?” This is one of the first questions I was asked today…my first day as the editor of Todaysparent.com. And this question confirmed the fact that I have the best job ever.
I should introduce myself. In a nutshell: I’m a 30-something, engaged-to-be-married, full-time working, world travelling, single mom of a six-year-old daughter, Rory, who was recently described as a “spitfire drenched in pink.” I think that pretty much sums us up.
You’ll get to know a lot more as I blog about my parental journey of discovery. For obvious reasons, I am now looking at my role as a mom in a whole new light.
This morning, for example, I saw a story in The Telegraph about the rising costs of childcare in the UK. Parents are paying as much as $20,000 a year, causing some to wonder: can I afford to work?
I get that. As a single mom, I have no choice. I have to work. But the cost of daycare has been a killer on my bottom line. For a while, I was spending more than $12,000 a year for someone to look after Rory.
That wasn’t because I wanted a super-elite, Mensa program that produced multilingual child geniuses. My Toronto ‘hood simply doesn’t have enough affordable daycare spaces and I had to take what I could get. Rory has been on a waiting list for the daycare at her school for three years. She’ll likely be old enough to work there by the time she gets in.
I’m often jealous of parents who have family or friends who can take care of their kids. I know that has its “political” consequences and can strain relationships, but there are days I’d give anything for that kind of help…my bank account would, too. I try not to think of all the money I could be saving.
Since jealousy gets me nowhere, I have tried to put my creativity to the test. Some parents and I once talked about a rotating child-care situation in which we would take turns every day looking after five kids while we worked from home. Yeah, it’s no surprise that idea didn’t go anywhere.
So I’m looking to you. Have you found any affordable solutions to the daycare dilemma? I’d love to hear from you!