Received Wednesday, November 26, 2008. - Perspective & Opinion
I have a question, I could use any advice you could spare.
Okay, a few months ago I accepted a job as a very part-time nanny for a toddler. For the record, I live in CA and only worked 2 days per week, 4 hours a day. The drive is about 25 minutes one way and I only made $10/hour, which netted me $80/week. Yes, I know...it was a low-paying job anyway. Anyhow, initially when she hired me, she had a neighbor watching the child 4 days a week, but told me she wanted me to watch the child two days a week, since she got home an hour later twice a week and wanted the child to stay on a nap schedule.
One day I asked her if she had a back-up plan in case I was ill or had a flat tire, etc. She said she would have the neighbor baby-sit, but the neighbor was moving in a month. Then a month later, she told me the neighbor was not moving after all. Okay...no red flags here. Fast forward 2 months into the job and I started feeling something iffy for some reason. The child now goes to preschool the two days I do not watch her and I still had my two days as well. Also it should be noted that sometimes the child does not nap on her regular schedule and the mother just shrugs it off as no big deal at all. Well, last week the mother informed me her child's preschool would be closed this whole week for Thanksgiving and I offered to watch her child for the four days it was closed since I need the extra money now. (I am a single mother). My employer said that she would ask the neighbor to watch her for the two days her child usually went to pre-school and if she could not, she would ask me. Well, I felt like she almost preferred to have the neighbor lady watch her child and was slightly offended. She even told me that if I was busy, then she could have the neighbor watch her child for the whole week. For the record, I never indicated I would be busy this week. So I don't know why she would offer to have the other lady help her out instead of me.
Coincidentally, I was registering for classes for next semester this weekend (I am also a student), and emailed her to see what days/times she would need me next semester. She emailed me back saying that she did not have her classes assigned yet (she is a college professor), but that her classes would probably be in the morning when her child would be in pre-school. She said she would use me if she needed back-up.
Okay here's my problem. She never told me this would be a temp job. She only asked me to commit AT LEAST until December when the semester ended. When was she going to let me know? After much thinking, I think this is what happened. I think she initially hired me because she thought the neighbor lady who was already watching her child was moving in a month. That way, she could use me until her daughter went to pre-school and for the two days she didn't. Then when she found out the neighbor wasn't moving, she felt bad letting me go and kept me on even though she probably didn't really want to.
Okay, after I figured this one out, I emailed her to say that I could not work anymore. I wanted to give her an easy way out by not having to fire me and I expected a nice email back saying that everything would be okay and she had her neighbor to help out still. I thought I was doing her a favor by firing myself and relieving her of the duty. But weird....she never replied or called me and she usually is good with her responses. I get the impression she is angry at me for quitting so abruptly.
Now I am wondering...did I overreact? Maybe she did want me and I was wrong? Or could she just be embarrassed because I finally figured it all out? Please any advice. Thank you.
P.S. I know in hindsight, I should have been more open and just approach it directly....but now what??!