There are a couple of reasons for this, one of which is the thing that I can't talk about yet. One of the other reasons is simply that it is getting too hard for my sister to give her child good care in the mornings while waiting for my arrival. She works from home, but that means that she has to work! Lead meetings and take notes and talk to people and she can't do that and care for a toddler who wants to play outside or get into everything on the desk or what have you. She has had times where she has needed to put Smug-Niece in the crib and walk away for a short time to get some meeting underway and she feels horrible about that.
Another reason is that I need to get some good routines established for Smug-Baby. She is still not sleeping well at night and I wonder if that is due in part to napping in her car seat every day. Her naps are dictated a lot by having another baby in the car who may keep her from falling asleep or wake her before she is ready. As Smug-Sister said, our first priority needs to be to our families and what is best for them.
So Smug-Sister has started the process of finding alternative childcare options and will be interviewing people over the next few weeks and we will start transitioning Smug-Niece into a new situation soon.
My goal is to make sure that Smug-Niece adjusts well to the new situation. Smug-Baby and I have been with her since she was 3 months old - every day! We are her day! She runs up for hugs when we get there and she and Smug-Baby kiss and hug each other. They are very close and I don't want to lose that.
On the other hand, my heart sings at the thought of getting off work and having the rest of the whole day to spend at home with my girl! She can nap in her own bed! I could perhaps attend an LLL meeting or a baby wearing meeting; get Smug-Baby into Melody Makers or another kind of group setting where she can make some friends. She is very used to being able to just grab things from Smug-Niece or push her over when Smug-Baby gets frustrated and I want her to be around all kinds of other kids too and learn that others will push back and take toys from her.
I will not feel such pressure to get stuff done around the house. I can still use my weekly breakdown to get everything done, but I won't feel like I have to stick Smug-Baby in front of the TV while I rush around to get laundry going or clean the bathroom.
Financially, this change will be hard on us both. Smug-Sister is going to have to pay someone else more than she has been paying me and I will have to adjust to less money coming in each month, but I am very excited about the thought of having some of my life back and I am willing to cut off the cable TV to make ends meet if necessary :)