When I graduated early from high school, I shadowed a midwife but also became a nanny to newborn twins (2 weeks old!!!!) that lived nearby. It was the best decision I’ve made in my whole life, ever. We’ll call these two boys the A Babies. I stayed with the A babies and their two older siblings until they turned one, and I only left because I had to do the whole college thing. When their mom sometimes jokes and asks me to just be their nanny forever, I sometimes actually consider it. My favorite thing was watching the babies grow up; I was there for so many firsts. I left their house everyday having learned something new about what it means to be a mom and take care of babies. Everyone told me before I watched the twins that I was crazy for wishing for multiples when I was older and married. Everyone told me when I started watching the twins that I would realize how much work it takes and change my mind. But the opposite happened. I fell so, SO in love with watching these two babies play and learn with each other. I might not be the lucky one in the family that has twins, but I’ll always want to have babies close together so they have the friendship that I saw between these two babies. Rambling. Sorry.
Anywaysss, when I moved away from my first nannying job and into college, I accepted a weekly job that also involved twins – the B Babies. I was SO excited. I just went over once a week to watch the babies while their mom took a long shower, went for a walk, or went to the grocery store. I was right back in my element. I LOVED watching these twins, just as I had before with the A Babies.
Eventually, my time with the B Babies was done and they got a lot older, so I stopped nannying for a while, and I was so sad. I just felt like a piece of me was missing. While I watched the A Babies, I was struggling with friendship and the fact that I had left high school. They made me SO happy and I talked to them all day. They were the best listeners. Am I crazy for telling two 6 months olds about girl drama? No, I am not. Its totally normal. While I watched the B Babies, I was adjusting to a new school and bigger classes. They heard me talk about that. Crazy? No. Did they love my talks? Yes. I swear.
I’m now back into nannying with a new family and my heart is sooooo happy. I love watching babies and kids figure themselves out and figure out the world around them. I love watching them try something new and then getting it right, but I also love the determination I see when something doesn’t work out and they get up to try again.
Here are some things that nannying has taught me over the course of about three years – and with all kids of all ages. You’d be surprised to know that there are many valuable lessons you can take away from blubbering to a newborn that can’t even see you when you’re like 6 inches away from his face.
19 THINGS IVE LEARNED FROM BEING A NANNY
- With three year olds, don’t ask. Tell. Nicely.
- Its never too early for Barney and a music concert.
- Early as in, like, before 7am.
- When they tell you they have to go potty, they mean RIGHT THIS VERY SECOND!!!!
- Your social life is… well, what social life?
- That’s NOT a bad thing though, because your days are spent full of giggles and thank yous and cool toys and dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets.
- If you don’t respond to a text on any given day, your friends and family just assume you’re with babies.
- Using the bathroom? Forget about it.
- Time out is sooooOOoo000 a thing and its magical and sent from the heavens. Just because I’m okay with time out doesn’t mean I overuse it, though. I just appreciate it when the time is necessary.
- When you hear a baby fall, don’t. Make. Eye. Contact. And it’ll all be fine. Nobody saw anyyyything.
- Already cooked chicken nuggets take approximately 48 seconds to heat up via microwave. Any longer than those 48 seconds and you’ll have some mad baby tears.
- Always carry an extra pacifier. Always.
- Accept the fact you’re going to know every kids song that has ever been sung in the whole entire world in the whole entire history of time.
- Also accept the fact that there is always ONE song that’s going to be sung about 8,973 times in one day. I mean, hey, at least you’ll know all of the words to Wheels on the Bus by the time you leave. That’s a real standout to add to your resume, amirite?
- Also remember to turn off your kid voice when you’re not around people under 4 feet tall and the age of like, 6. I whipped out Princess Ariel once when I was hanging out with my boyfriend and I got a really freaked out look and a, “Can you talk normal now please?”
- Clorox wipes are the greatest invention known to man.
- So are washable markers.
- 2 choices: either you do it by yourself or I will do it.
- Do NOT put your hair up or change your appearance drastically. Major no no. Once, I put my hair in a bun because we were using finger paint, and the 3 year old looked at me and said, “Um, no. You don’t look right.” Leave it to a 3 year old to tell you that you ain’t shit.