Monday, October 15, 2012

Thankgoodness, the nanny showed up today.

Well, in terms of my ability to hire nannies for my children, the 4th time is the charm. 

I have never been so bad at anything in my life.  Except learning Czech when I lived in Prague.  And saying "bread" in Russian, which is a closely related skill.  And singing.  And not getting ADD while browning meat and walking away from the stove. 

I guess I'm bad at many things, but this was perhaps the most stressful thing with which to be unskilled. The nannies weren't just agreeing to do it and then changing their minds, they were changing their minds at the last minute.  I am deeply grateful to retired fathers and the ability to change airline tickets, because we survived last week thanks to my dad's awesomeness (and flexibility to stay longer). 

And in case you think we were just under-bidding our nannies, the ridiculous fact is that I was offering to pay at the higher-end of the range...and offering bonuses for the first week.   In hindsight I wonder if they were suspicious about how awful my kids were, since I was paying bonuses to be around them? 

Like I said, I'm not very skilled at the whole nanny thing.

If I wasn't in love with the new job, and feeling like it was the absolute perfect fit for our family, I would have seen it as life's red-flag that my working was a terrible decision.  I wasn't ready to say that yet, though.

But all is well that ends well, and today a completely precious woman named Maria picked up my little children at 1:00. And Jack at 4:00.  And I left work at 5 to find my children smiling...alive...playing board games...and begging her to come back tomorrow.  She was such a professional that she was even wearing nursing scrubs. I adored her.  I would have given her a giant bear-hug, but that seemed like a very creepy way to start a nanny-employer relationship.

There have been two puzzle pieces to fit together with my new job: Loving my children's sitters who watch them during my work-hours, and loving my job.  In this particular moment of this particular day, I am over-the-moon about both of these.

I always tell Steve that the first month of a new job, you usually hate it -- and the first 3 months, it's hard to know if you'll eventually like it. It takes awhile to settle in. We both hate being new and learning everything from scratch, because we like doing a good job.  And it can be very difficult to do a good job as a complete newbie.

With this job, though, it's what I've been doing (in much smaller portions) for the last 12 years.  Give me a stack of papers to grade, and you'll get them back with a filled-out rubric, margin notes, and a typed letter to the student with comments.  I'm a grading fiend.  So to have a job that asks me to do what I love and has the added coolness of the military back-drop (I get to learn so many new things!), and I couldn't really be happier right now.  I've met three levels up of my superiors now, and am amazed by all of them.  I feel like a freakishly happy Pollyanna, walking down the hallway at work.

Plus, I now have a reason to dress like a grown-up and curl my hair every day.  So that's something too.  I do need to tame down my pink skirts and leopard-print umbrella, I'm thinking, as I'm feeling painfully out of place among all the green-suited uniforms.  But they are gracious to me and tell me they like my umbrella, so maybe they appreciate me spicing things up a bit. :)

Anyway, that's my joyous vent right now.  We have a nanny, for AT LEAST today!!!  I will focus on these small victories.