I realized today when I stopped at Dash's school to drop off the last of his teachers' Christmas gifts--last of seven, by the way. gifts for his teachers have cost as much as a week of daycare-- that they think they own him. And that I like it.
They delight in telling me about his faces and strides. I recognize their pride when they brag on his latest milestone because it's the same as mine. We all, the eight of us, cluck like mother hens about him and it feels delicious. If someone had told me that a near stranger would take symbolic ownership of my child, I would have predicted that I'd have to claw that person's eyes out. So I'm pretty surprised at how content I feel about it.
I guess it's about the fact that although these women probably wouldn't lie down in front of a bus for my child, I'll bet they'd go pretty far to protect him. To make sure he's growing strong and sturdy and doesn't spend even a moment feeling unloved.
I also learned today that Dash has joined a gang. There are four of them and they hang out in the ball pit, sqwaking and and babbling with great intensity at eachother. I'm looking into having matching satin jackets made up to make it official.