“I’ve worked hard for other people but I’ve never worked hard for myself.” -Winner of Project Runway 2013
This quote really hits home because I have been serving people my entire life. Without going into extreme detail, when you serve different families for years as a nanny, you begin to feel like a decorative piece of furniture in their squeaky clean & stylish houses. Walking through neighborhood after neighborhood of perfectly cut grass and gingerbread castles with $10 shoes on feels embarrassing deep down. The whisper in the wind says that I am only there because I know someone who lives on that neatly ironed street. I’ve been lucky to work for a few amazing families that have truly been good experiences. I’m not knocking the people specifically that I’ve worked for. My point is that we come from different worlds and that serving in a foreign world is really hard.
I work my ass off and can’t afford things for myself. I’m talking socks, new shoes, a haircut-the list goes on. Yet, working for families (especially good ones) is equivalent to being trapped in a wash machine. I have the same routine, every day, and regardless what happens to me financially or emotionally..stopping does not seem to be an option. I convince myself that the family depends on me and needs me to function. Being depended on is flattering and almost addicting. It’s also incredibly exhausting to have so much responsibility day in and day out. Questions go through my head like how can I leave? I take care of their child. What would they do without me?..
The answer to this is : exactly what they did before me. They will figure it out. The child will, in all reality, never remember me and yet still grow up happy and healthy.
Meanwhile, I have to figure my life out. Always being concerned with money, I’ve never really put myself first. I’m at a point in my life at 25 years old where I feel like I’ve earned the right to be selfish for once. Maybe it just feels like being selfish though…it could quite possibly be just feeling like a human that matters. I need to make a public declaration that the family I am currently with will be my last family to nanny for. As soon as we move out-of-state it’s time to find something (anything) else. It’s time to say goodbye to the only profession that I feel truly confidant in. I need to do this for me. So that I can start working for myself. Doing God knows what. All I know is that I want it to make me feel:
happy. comfortable. satisfied. secure. motivated. energetic.confidant. worthy. accomplished. talented. amazing. beautiful.
It’s taken me over 10 years to realize that none of those words, for me, coincide with childcare.