Published on April 3rd, 2011 | by Paz4
Here is our first nanny with Lupita and I on my lunch break.
Have you ever been dumped and you honestly had no idea that there was anything wrong in the relationship? Well, that is how we felt last Monday morning as our nanny told us she could no longer stay with us… Huh? What? Are you seeing someone else? We had been dumped in a language we barely understood.
In China there are very few day-cares as we know them in the United States. Here young children are cared for by either their mother, grandparent, or hired nanny. Most nannies actually live in your home with you, because they travel from their home town to the large city for work. They get paid much more in a large city for their services than they would in the countryside. They are called migrant workers. They have no place to live so they live with you. We do not have this kind of space in our home, so we had to turn away some people who needed accommodation. Motel Chentnik is full.
I don’t know how we would do with live-in help. It would be a little odd. I have to say it was an adjustment for us to have someone in our house all day. So what does/did she do and all that jazz?
8:00 am – arrive
9:00 – 10:30 Clean up and go to the market to buy the food for the day
10:30- 12:00 Laundry -take care of kid(s)
1:00 – 6:300 pm Clean, play, laundry,
7:00 -Clean up after dinner
7:30 Sweep & mop
8:00 pm go home
Most families have their nanny work 6 days a week or give them 3 days off a month. I don’t think you can call those days off exactly…but okay. Since we are use to performing these duties on our own while working full-time jobs we are perfectly fine giving our nanny two days off a week. When we have off, she has off. We can handle the laundry for two days a week.
What do we do??? How do we spend our time? Zeek and I are working full-time so we obviously have our work. However, since we have a nanny we have been able to spend much more time with our kids. It is incredible how much time all of that other stuff takes up. We get to play with the kids on our lunch break and then eat a delicious meal. We never miss breakfast……except maybe on her days off. We play before and after dinner. All four of us get to eat every meal together. All of this is possible because of our nanny and her cooking….until she dumped us.
Again, we didn’t think anything was wrong. She had been getting along great with the kids. There were some things that she did not know anything about, like a stroller, diaper, or a washer machine. She had never used a stroller, so we bought a sling for her to carry Abe around. We had to show her how to change a diaper. She came from a poor village and they would have used cloth diapers or split pants. We explained the washer machine and she did very well. For us these were never deal breakers and we thought everything was going well, even the communication.
On her 10th day with us we were going to go and look at another school for Lupita. We had to pick up our translator first. As we were about to leave for the school our translator mentions that the nanny wants to know if we are looking for someone else?
How we got dumped???
HUH??? Why? What….did we miss something? She wanted to know if we were looking for someone else because the language barrier and two kids was too much. It was her fault. (Typical it isn’t you, it’s me) Seriously? Our jaws dropped…what? We were feeling like things were going okay and now she wants to know if we are looking for someone else? We didn’t understand. She offered to stay until we found someone else. That was not an option for us! If we didn’t feel that she was 100% committed then we couldn’t have her with our kids. Simple. Within 30 minutes, we returned to the apartment and had her collect her things and we were without a nanny.
With both kids at home and both of us working Zeek had to go back to pulling a double shift, watching the kids for part of the day and working at night. I returned to working during the day and then watching the kids in the afternoon/night. We are lucky we have pretty easy kids that are used to being adventure buddies with their parents.
We had gone almost 30 days spending every day and night with both children before we hired the nanny and had been having lots of fun. I will say that those days were/are precious, crazy, and never dull. We feel very lucky to be able to spend so much time with our kids. Hey, we like them, go figure!
What now??? We had to call the agency that we had gone through to hire her and let them know of her departure. (my employer connected us with the agency) They suggested we hire a nanny from the Philippines because they speak English. However, we would have to pay for their work visa, relocation, higher salary, and provide accommodation for them. That is just too much for us to bite off. We asked that they continue to look for a Mandarin speaking woman.
It was very frustrating having our nanny quit. We had felt like we were making great progress on completing our moving process. Nevertheless, we would much rather be spending all of our time with our kids than none of it.
The only thing Zeek I were really excited about with the nanny was we thought we might get a date night soon!! That is the only thing we have missed by not knowing anyone to help us with our kids. We enjoy being with them and have learned so much about them and ourselves, but we have missed our weekly date night. It feels nice to go play adult every once in awhile.
Who is up for the Chentnik China Nanny challenge????