Adventures in Babysitting

Ryan and I are both members of our church’s worship team.  Typically, we ask that they don’t schedule us to play on the same weekend so that one of us can be available to take care of Ryder.  This week, despite their best efforts, it couldn’t be avoided (six drummers declined, so they were desperate).  Anyway, on Saturday (which also happened to be Ryder’s first birthday), we had to be at rehearsal at 2:30, and then play for the 5 and 6:30 services.  We know that Ryder does really well in the nursery, but no one would be available until just before services started.  So much to my chagrin, we had to find a babysitter… for the very first time (GULP!).

I was feeling a wide range of emotions in the days leading up to this milestone… I was sad about being away from him for so long (ok, it was only three hours, but when you’ve been with someone for a year straight, three hours is a long time!).  I was worried that he would be a total basketcase.  I was concerned that his basketcase-ness would make his babysitters miserable.  And I was feeling guilty about leaving him on his birthday.  I know, I know… he’s one, and he’ll never remember it.  But I will.  🙁  And I know that it’s totally unreasonable and neurotic… and I’m ok with that.  🙂

I was totally prepared to bawl my eyes out upon leaving him with someone else… a relative stranger.  But a miraculous thing happened… when we got there, we went inside, and I put him down.  It didn’t take him long to let go of my leg and start exploring his surroundings and interacting with the babysitter and her kids.  And before I knew it, she was holding him… and he was happy!  He didn’t cry when we left… not even a whimper.  And even more miraculous than that… I didn’t cry either!

In his three hours with this wonderful family, they went to the park, played in the house, read books, took a walk, etc.  And he was totally happy the whole time.  To top it all off, he spent the following 2 1/2 hours in the church nursery, and really hung in there.  He was SO exhausted by the end of the day that he’d fallen asleep in the arms of a sweet nursery attendant during the second service.  He slept all the way home, and was effortlessly transferred straight to bed.  This morning, he returned to the church nursery for a grand total of four hours, and was equally fantastic.

I’m SO proud of him for hanging in there all weekend.  And I’m SO relieved that we got this first babysitting event out of the way.  Now I know that not only can he handle it, but so can I.  The possibilities are now endless.  🙂

Speaking of playing with the band, Ryan and I were listening to our music in preparation for rehearsal, and noticed that Ryder was bobbing his head to the beat.  So Ryan handed him a drum stick, and he started tapping it on his high chair tray.  Luckily, the camera was nearby, and we captured this:

Ryder\’s First Drum Lesson

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