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Life on the Highway

While pregnant, I got on every daycare list I could find in Seattle. Still, after my daughter was born we had no childcare. Desperation set in, I widened my circle, and I found an opening! But there was a catch. My family lives in Seattle. I worked in Seattle, too. My husband commutes 12 miles across a bridge that is famous locally for its horrific gridlock. He used to ride the bus to work, but the daycare was also across the bridge, near his work. So, he and the baby would drive across the bridge, spending over an hour in traffic to go 12 miles. He would drop her off at daycare, then go to work. I would get to work early so I could leave at 3:00, take the bus across the bridge, pick up the car from my husband's work, then get our daughter and spend another hour stuck in traffic.

After 4 months, we gave up. Neither of us were especially productive since we had such rigid work schedules to follow, and we spent more time in traffic than anything else. All this was costing us more than our mortgage, too! While the cost of daycare hurts, it's even harder to swallow when it doesn't make your life easier.

—JodiWashington
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