Received Sunday, September 19, 2010
Not too long ago, I wrote a post about why I hated my job. I'm happy to say things have drastically improved since then.
After almost a year of handling behaviour problems from both the children (agressiveness, rudeness, clinginess) and their parents (fecklessness, backbiting, laziness) I finally quit. I gave a month's notice and I said I could stay longer if they hadn't found anyone to replace me, they assured me they had. On my last day I took the children on a day trip they loved and bought them small presents to remember me by. After all, it's not their fault I had a toxic working environment and I do miss them very much.
I have a new job now, working for a lady with twins who have just turned one. The difference in my working day is staggering simply because of the great attitude displayed towards me and the children. My day starts at eight instead of half seven, and my employer has the kettle boiled for me to have some tea when I get in. The babies are either in clean nappies or they've just soiled them, and their mother apologizes for putting me to work straight away. It's never a bother, changing a nappy is a mindless but smelly minor task, and I'm glad to see that the nappy isn't overflowing and neither baby has severe nappy rash. I feed them their breakfast while I drink my tea and the parents leave for the day, bidding us all a cheerful goodbye.
The babies take a nap in the morning and depending on what day it is, I either put them to sleep in the cots upstairs or I take them out in the buggy. Some days I have mother-and-baby groups so I get to talk to some grown-ups for a little while, other days I don't so I can sit and read a book for a little while, once I've done any cleaning I need to do. The amount of housework I do is miniscule, the house is generally tidy and aside from a little dishwasher unpacking and bottle making, I have a free hour while the babies are asleep. I plan any meals i have around these naps and the fact that I can sit down and eat at a table and off a plate puts me in an instant good mood.
When the babies are up, we all play together in the house or we go on day trips. They're too young for the zoo just yet but they got a great kick out of the aquarium. Just going anywhere on the bus or train is enough to amuse them. I look forward to when they're both able to walk so I can take them both swimming. They nap again mid-afternoon, and I have another chance to sit and eat or read. With the extra time I have, I can make a salad or roast some vegetables instead of relying on ready-meals and sandwiches. I don't comfort eat as much as I used to, and as a result I've lost a good amount of weight and my skin looks better. I'm happier, so I sing more and the kids love that. I'm much more fun to be around when I'm happy.
After their dinner, their grandfather stops by some days to take them for a walk, both to see them and spend time with them and to give me a break, though at this stage I don't need a break at all. The only trouble I'm having is that I'm getting through books too quickly. They're gone for an hour and when they get back, we play some more and I feed them supper. Their parents come home and depending on the day, the mother drives me home. She always pays me on time and pays me extra if I've gone overtime, and even though she's only ever about ten minutes late she apologises for keeping me.
Being treated with respect has made a big difference to the way I work. I'm always in a good mood, if not a great mood. My boss is impressed that when she comes home I'm never flustered and the kids are never screaming. The babies love me and I love them. I'm looking forward to the next few years as their nanny.