In the category 'worries I'm fortunate to have' - reader discretion is advised.
As I said before, in these parts you have to start looking for daycare as soon as possible.
The main reason is that most mothers are working mothers. Staying at home was still fairly common in my mother's generation, but that has changed. Maternity leave is fairly short to boot: 3 months. As generous my government is with funding ART, so stingy are they with maternity leave. There are a number of schemes to extend your leave, some (partly) paid, some unpaid, but you have to meet qualifications etc. That's a fortunate worry for another day.
I applied for a spot in a municipal daycare centre and am now on a waiting list. They won't tell me whether they can actually offer me a spot before August. Therefor, I have to look for other options as well. Easier said than done.
At 10 weeks, I visited a private daycare, and got the line "well, you're quite late looking for daycare".
Late? Late! When should I have started? When I saw two pink lines? Between beta 1 and 2? When I chucked birth control, all those years ago? I was a bit upset at that response, basically because it reminded me of all those women who could actually be so confident as to apply for daycare as soon as they quit birth control. Sigh.
Another private daycare centre had a spot, but wanted me to pay for the first month up front, right away.
I'd be willing to do that, if it were possible to annul (say a couple of months beforehand) and get a refund. However they don't offer that possibility. I understand their need for commitment, otherwise parents enroll but don't show up in the end, leaving them holding the bag. But I can't agree with those terms, they're not fair. Also, I don't feel comfortable to commit yet. How can I when I'm being asked to predict where we'll be in approximately 10 months time. For one, I don't know how things will work out with my job yet.
An alternative to daycare centres are family daycares, where someone takes care of up to 6 children in their own home. I've enrolled on the waiting list of a non-profit agency, again I won't get an answer till much later.
The whole idea of needing daycare still strikes me as surreal. A baby - in this household? I suppose that's why I'm feeling so laid back about finding daycare. That, and the fact that this worry pales in comparison with those of infertility treatment. No daycare, no work. Whatever. We'd be poorer, for sure, but not poor in any real sense. I'd have to sharpen my budgetary skills, but we'd manage. Truth be told, the idea of spending some time as a SAHM does attract me. Especially the mom part. :-)