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The Glitch in Our Summer Plans

Written by Kathy Glow

Written by:  Kathy Glow

Summer is officially here in our house as all of my boys finished school last week. I love summer! It’s such a great time to relax, play and reconnect with my boys again after all of the “busy-ness” of the school year. My boys are signed up for camps and lessons, and I’ve got lots of trips in mind to the pool
and to fun, hot spots in and around Omaha. It takes a lot of planning to keep my crew interested and engaged all summer long.

And, I’m not going to lie, it takes someone helping me as well.

We have been incredibly lucky to have had a wonderful babysitter for the past six years. Megan has been working for us since our six-year-old was a baby. The boys love her, and she is truly like an extension of myself. She loves my boys and cares for them just as well, if not better than I do sometimes. She knows what I am thinking before I say it, and she helps me keep things running like a well-oiled machine.

She’s been a godsend over the years. With so many active little boys running in so many directions, her presence at the pool and on outings has saved my sanity more than a few times. She has helped take them to camps and appointments and provided time for me to relax or complete projects that
otherwise would never get done. She helps with laundry and dishes and keeping the house organized.

She’s watched my boys grow and was with us through Joey’s illness and death.

After the last three difficult summers we’ve had – the summer of Joey’s illness, the summer of his death, and last summer’s pregnancy and new baby – I’ve been looking forward to this one. I’ve just felt it would be great with no glitches at all.

Except that there is a glitch…Megan recently “broke up” with us.

The day that she told me she got a “real job,” my face was smiling at her and saying congratulations, but my head and heart were crying, “NOOOOOO!!”

I have tried other babysitters, but they either ran screaming from our house of four boys or they simply weren’t Megan. So when my husband said he found us a replacement babysitter I was skeptical, resistant even. I dreaded training someone new. What if the boys didn’t like her? What if the baby wouldn’t go to her? What if my boys and my house were in total chaos all summer long? One of my friends likened the whole process to dating someone new, “You have to start communicating again,” she said.

When Layne showed up at our house last week, the boys were all fighting for her attention. I had forgotten how much children love anyone new. Even Baby Evan crawled right up to her and smiled.

Maybe this wouldn’t be so bad after all. I struggled to think of all the things she would need to know; simple things, like where the drinking glasses and diapers were kept.

The real test came last week on a day that I had a gazillion errands to run. When Layne arrived, the boys and I were all fighting for her attention as they were trying to tell her about their last day of school and I was trying to remember all the things I thought she would need to know. I was annoyed, to tell you the
truth, because Megan would just know.

As I was out, I kept checking my phone for texts or missed calls, but there were none. I was tempted to run home in between errands to see if the house was on fire or the baby was inconsolable, but I didn’t.

I finally arrived home five minutes before my promised time (with Megan I could always be late, but I didn’t want to give Layne a bad first impression), nervous to walk through the door.

I was astounded by what greeted me.

The t.v. was off because the boys had already had their one movie, and they were all engaged in playing with toys. The baby was happily playing on the floor after reportedly having taken a great nap and eaten a good snack. My kitchen was clean, and there was freshly folded laundry in a basket.

Clearly the only person having a problem with the new sitter was me.

I can’t say how the rest of the summer will go, but I’m hopeful that we’ve passed our one and only glitch and the fun times can begin again!

What do you look for in a good babysitter? Have you ever had to “break up” with one or has one ever “broken up” with you?

About the author

Kathy Glow

Kathy Glow is a wife and mom to four lively boys and one beautiful angel in Heaven, lost to cancer. Most days you can find her under a pile of laundry ordering take-out. When she is not driving all over town in her mini-van or wiping “boy stuff” off the walls, she is writing about what life is REALLY like after all your dreams come true. Her writing has been featured on sites such as Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, Good Housekeeping, and Mamalode; but Her View From Home is her favorite place to be. Her blog is at www.lifewiththefrog.com. You can follow her on Facebook at Kissing the Frog.

9 Comments

  • Kathy – I loved this one. Only recently have we had enough courage to leave our girls with someone other than family. It’s so hard! Even though I started babysitting at age 8 – 8!!!! – we don’t trust anyone unless they are in college. 😉 And even then, I’m always sending text messages checking in. One of these days I hope to find someone like your Megan!!

    • Eight years old?!? Wow! I know how you feel, Leslie. It took a long time for us (me) to leave our boys with a non-family member, and then we found Megan, and she is just like family by now. At least we’ll still have her on weekends!

      • I know – I was young! My sis went with me though, and she was 10. Still – how in the world did they trust us?! 🙂 And good that you still have her on the weekends!!

  • I am right there with you…the only non-family member I trusted with my children went away to college this past fall, and got a job there and is staying there this summer. You would think that as a high school teacher, I would have a multitude of sitters, but I have a hard time trusting them after I see/hear the things they do in school…we will see what happens.

    • Amanda, I can see how that would be hard. I hope you find someone who shows you GOOD things at school. Good luck!

  • Kathy,
    Great post. I’ve been reading your blog well before I knew Leslie was reading your blog & having you write! Oh the babysitters…:) You were right on with this one! Keep up the great work!

  • I also started babysitting at a very young age. I was in the 5th grade and I would babysit the neighbors (who really weren’t all that much younger than me) only when my parents were home in case of emergency.

    Finding babysitter is so stressful! We have a you need to be able to drive and be referred by someone we know well. Yet we recently let a very responsible 12 year old, with a ton of experience for her age, babysit our kids. ONLY because she lived next door to my parents (which is where we needed the sitter) and her mom promised to be home next door the entire time if she needed anything. It was stressful, but she did great!

    We also trade off with our neighbors which is great! Free babysitting in exchange for watching their kids now and then. And my kids love the play dates.

    We still have yet to find that one really great babysitter. Kathy you mentioned being in the Omaha area. I live in Omaha, where do you find your sitters here?

    • Kelly, we’ve been lucky enough to find the daughters of women who work in my husband’s office. But I’ve heard that a lot of Marian girls and Creighton students are looking for jobs as well. My niece works closely with a sorority at Creighton and she can post jobs for sitters. E-mail me at [email protected] with your information and I can pass it on to her. 🙂