First Day at Day Care for Dad

baby carrier

Modern torture device?

Last weekend, I had my first experience with a baby carrier.

Or what I like to think of as some sort of modern torture device for obedient husbands.

The top part goes around your head, the bottom strap latches itself around your waist, and the itty-bitty strip in the middle goes around the baby.

This leaves the baby’s arms free to grab your glasses, beard, sleeves, anything within reach…and at the same time allows the baby to smack his or her forehead repeatedly against your chin, just to remind you that, yes, there is a baby in front of you who is blocking your vision random obstacles that may happen to cross your path. Such as a train.

The occasion was me going to a weekend-long seminar and my wife going to a department meeting for work. It was my first time to bring my daughter to the day care center, although my wife had brought her to the day care twice before. Easy, I thought. She’s not all that heavy, and it’s only the next station over.


Of course, I was carrying my own computer briefcase, as well as the baby bag filled with assorted clothes in case of emergency, extra diapers in case of emergency, and evidently several large rocks, in case of emergency, no doubt. The thing weighed a ton.

“Leaving her in the arms of a stranger was tough.”

My daughter, of course, was fine. It took me three tries with the carrier before I realized that the carrier strap is supposed to go around my neck. Also, the strap has to be extremely loose at first, otherwise I can’t fit my head through. See, the baby has to be strapped in first. Not enough room for two heads, and a bit uncomfortably close when passing my head through the device. Up close and personal, shall we say. Or perhaps, “Hi, Daddy! Can I drool on your forehead?”

Leaving her in the arms of a stranger was tough. Mentally, I thought I was prepared. My wife had already done this, so no big deal, right? Yeah. Right.

Of course, the day care worker told us afterward that our daughter had been all right for about 2 minutes after I left, and then had burst into hysterical cries when she realized I wasn’t coming back. Luckily, she calmed down and was fine eventually.

My wife picked her up after 4 hours. When I got back home, both were already asleep. But I’ll never forget the look on my daughter’s face the next morning. Talk about a look of betrayal.

Good thing babies forgive after a bottle of warm milk.

About MThomas

Long ago, I gave up my high school dreams of becoming the next Carl Sagan and instead wound up working (in order) at McDonald's, a '60s-themed restaurant, a video rental store, a used bookstore, a computer seller, Kinko's, a Jewish newspaper company, and an HR firm. I eventually became a teacher of intercultural communication in Kyoto, where I vainly attempt to apply quantum mechanics to language teaching, practice martial arts and Zen Buddhism, and always keep one eye on the sky. And yes, I know my profile photo's backward. I just think it looks better this way.
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2 Responses to First Day at Day Care for Dad

  1. Hey Matt! I’m not so sure about this neck / head strap thing. I have a carrier I use to carry CJ, who’s 14 months and about 27 pounds, and it just uses shoulder straps and a belt. It’s nice because it can be used for either front or back carry.

    Anyway, you might want to explore other designs if that one’s uncomfortable.

    Cheers, Josh


    • Yeah, we’re only using it because we got it free. 🙂 Our daughter is definitely heavier now, although probably only about 15-16 pounds. Already too heavy for my old back! Having kids is definitely for the young.

      Thanks for the comment!


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