This diary is more for me today...
Today I am missing my kids terribly. My heart is aching for them.
No, they are not REALLY MY kids but they were for a year.
I worked in New Canaan, CT (about 1/2 hr from Manhattan) for a very wealthy family as a full time live in nanny this past year.
For 6 children.
No that was not a typo... there were 6 of them.
Ranging in age from 4 to 16. The money was great, I was able to pay off all of my credit cards and buy a new wardrobe (and there is no better place to do that than NYC!)
But most importantly, I was loved tremendously by 6 great kids.
I would get up at 7am to be ready for work at 7:30 and from then my morning consisted of waking the kids up and getting them ready for school, (NOT AN EASY TASK, MIND YOU!), dropping them off, running errands, picking them up (some much earlier than others...)
driving them back and forth from soccer, lacrosse birthday parties, student coucil meetings and the tutors, trying to get them back in time for piano lessons, squeezing dinner in there somewhere, baths, laundry, and then a couple hours for helping them with homework and playing until I get to read them a bedtime story, get smothered in bedtime kisses and hugs and tuck them into bed. 7pm would roll around (if it wasn't a working night) and I would be too tired to do much in the way of being social.
It was hard work. 50+ hours a week. Only Sunday's and Monday's off. Not much in the way of a social life for a year... being away from David and all of the tearful "I miss you" conversations we had...
But I wouldn't trade the experience for the world.
Here is why:
Ashley- My 16 year old, who I would restle with, Excersize with, bake with and obsess about boys, popularity, braces, school and weight with. My shopping and movie partner. The girl who got me to love NSYNC even though I detested boy bands.Who a laughed and cried with, and who sometimes let me borrow her clothes.
Jessica- My 14 year old. Overly worried about everything. Dilligent and a perfectionist. Freckles and flushed cheeks with an body that any athlete would kill for. Jesse was my helper. My confidant. She loved to tell me every detail of her day and listened to all my gripes patiently. Always caring about others more than she cares about herself. With a spiritual side that came out of nowhere. Passionate with a temper to match.
Kelley- My 11 year old angel child. Never a whine or an argument. Easy going and laid back, likes to be lazy and watch t.v. but smart as a whip but slow to pick up on some things and so sensitive that she cries on the flip of a dime. My goof off buddy. My freak out relief. Tall and slender, light brown, stick straight hair that she will only wear parted down the middle, hanging in her face, no matter how hard I try to get her to try something new. Stubborn as can be.
Colleen- My 9 year old. Oooh did me ever drive me nuts! Mischeivious and devious. A whiner. Loved to laugh at me when I was angry with her and torture her brother to the breaking point. But she was also very creative and had moments of such thoughtfullness, it made me cry. Like the time she left a note for me when it was time for me to head home, that begged me to stay... Her dimple in her left cheek, a deep one, and only the one... freckle faced with an Irish complexion and coloring.
Blake- My 7 year old. The only boy in a family of 6 children. A little jock. He could never take no for an answer, threw the best temper tantrums and didn't listen very well, but he was adorably cute. Very energetic, popular, friendly, impeccable phone manners, wonderful social manners. SO affectionate that he wouldn't go to bed without giving me a hug and kiss and saying "I love you", even when he was mad at me. A boy who cries easily when he is upset, and always needs comfort. He told me he would want to marry me if I was younger and Dave wasn't around.
And my baby...
Haley- My sweet four year old who would sometimes hug my neck so tightly I couldn't breath and plant soft little kisses on my cheek and always whispered "I love you so, so much" and who would say "toowkey" instead of turkey, and "bwotha" instead of brother and who would ask me to play candyland with her at LEAST three times a day and who loved to dance around the living room to NSYNC with me, who had the most untameable golden hair and the biggest, bluest eyes with a dimple in her chin, who would always fall asleep when we were in the car and who would cuddle me when I comforted her after a nightmare.
It was a long, hard year. But I learned so much about myself. People would always say,
"I bet this makes you not want to have children"
but it had quite the opposite effect. I want a big family. So that all of my children have a best friend. Someone to play with and share with. Different personalities that make up a family. One that is filled with love and respect for one another. Something that in today's society, is hard to find.
And I found that I could love 6 children that weren't my own, more than I possibly thought I could ever. And there are 6 children who love me, who send me pictures and notes and call and leave messages on my phone that make me cry. I will always have that "other" family.
And for one year, I made a difference in the lives of 6 children and who knows how that will affect the rest of their lives?
But I know how it has affected mine...
and I am so much better for it.