Monday, 17 January 2011

Nanny Burn Out

Now that you understand why I have "employees," you can better feel my pain when I tell you the latest in Fancy Nanny Drama! My children have finally done it. Between the hissy fits and the constant need to remove their clothes, the insistence on pooping immediately after a diaper change and the intense fascination with hiding food under their butts during meals, Nanny #1 is burned out. She wants “to talk to adults.” And I have to say, I’m actually relieved. I was starting to think she was weird.

I mean, I know I don’t want to spend every waking minute with these two. I love them more than anything and would throw my body in front of a moving bus to spare them a moment of pain but even so. Back before Christmas when Nanny #3 (who really should become Nanny #2 now that we no longer have the nights covered on a regular basis) was sick, I spent the weekend literally weeping as I tried to keep my Fancy House and Fancy Family fed, clean and entertained. I think it was a combination of little hands constantly clawing at my body and my overly full bladder that threatened to tip me over the edge. Seriously, TC, can your mother go to the toilet without you crying until you vomit? Good God. Maybe if H had either the insight or the kind of schedule that would provide me with a moment of respite, I wouldn’t need someone here at least part of every day. But he doesn’t. So I do.

As much as I love being a mother, I still like working outside the house. It’s good to use your brain once in a while. And I hold privacy, personal space and the ability to urinate daily in very high regard. Lucky for me, then that I have the means to hire help. But I’ve always found it difficult to find people who want to spend so much time with babies and who are also not complete weirdos. Like the baby nurse I had for the first 5 months as a parent. I gave her a day off rather than fly across country with her because I frankly couldn’t imagine any pain greater than being stuck next to her on an airplane for 6 hours, not even trying to pee while balancing a tiny baby on the bathroom counter. (See, here we are back to my urinary habits. Is this a side effect of the Diet Coke addiction?)

A couple days ago I had a heart-to-heart with Nanny #1, just to see what was going on. (Because finding dirty diapers tucked into piles of clothes downstairs just seemed like a cry for help, don’t you think?) Turns out she’s also like to use her brain. If we lived in a Fancier neighbourhood, maybe there would be other Nannies to befriend. Alas, our local schools are primarily Bangladeshi speaking. So she’s out of luck.

The compromise we’ve reached is that she can cut back to 40 hours a week (I know, stop screaming.) and have a day to pursue other activities. Ones that require more brain power than finger paints. And I guess I’ll be looking for yet another Nanny, one who can do a single full day a week. But I bet she’ll be happy to do 2 or 3 evenings a week as well. Ha. The wheels are a’turnin…


  1. I think the dirty diapers tucked into the clothes was definitely a cry for help, bet that was a nasty surprise!

  2. Maybe she can sit at your feet and bask in your glory of escaping the house.

  3. I love my daughter more than I ever thought possible. But I'm like a bear out of hibernation when I havent had enough adult time. Its easier when you can have a conversation with them. I promise!

  4. I think the dirty diapers tucked into the clothes was definitely a cry for help, bet that was a nasty surprise!

  5. I stumbled upon this while trying to search for my own blog. My thoughts are irrelevant to the fact that I am a nanny myself, and not a weirdo. Score!...I suppose. I find these thoughts of yours to be quite, well, ugly. I am sure you can appreciate the bluntness, give how you spill things right out. Yeah kids can be a nannies don't just dabble in finger paint and clean up after that because we love it. I have been doing this for years and I couldn't imagine how I would feel if the Mom I work for was blogging about how "weird" and seemingly useless my job is. You spot it, you got it. Perhaps you are the one who is "weird". I bet the wheels are a'turnin now.