Nine Ways Being a Nanny Changed My Life

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Nannies are sharing ways their job changed their life.

“Nannying is hardly a real job in my opinion”

 

That was a comment that someone posted on Twitter yesterday and it hit me so hard that I really, really, wanted to act like immature teenage girl and fight with that person.

I assume girl who said that was babysitting on occasion, probably polishing her nails by the pool( see, I can generalize and be mean too) and therefore, she might see nanny job as “not a real job”.

 

ISeeMe personalized children's books

 

In the past when my boyfriend’s work buddy asked me what do I do, I avoided the question.

When my former employees asked me what is my plan after this job, quickly I would say I am planning to enroll in college this fall. On my resume I tend to put lot’s of fancy words to disguise the fact that I am a nanny. Plain, old, just a nanny. I am always interested to hear and see other people’s perspective and learn something new, and here is what I learned after years of pretending I am something I am not, because I am shamed and looked down on for being nanny.

 

 

If I let someone else determine how important my role and my job is, I am giving them power to mock and make fun of my career and profession.

When I hide what I do, I make it possible for others look down on me, because I look down on me.

mom kisses baby

I am not in this job for the money, but often I forget that my pay is way higher than average. I often forget all the perks and amazing things that make this job the best one I ever had.

Here is reminder to me and to other amazing, wonderful childcare providers that we are important.

We are making a change here, and we are doing the dirty work that others don’t have time or desire to.

I became better person since I am working with kids. I developed in so many different ways and here are some of them that make me happy that I choose to be a nanny:

 

I grew up.

I had to. I landed my first nanny job by “fake it, ’till you make it” and I was desperate to show myself and others I can do it. I had this opinion similar to the one at the beginning of post, that it’s not a big deal and I can do it, everyone can do it.

The fact is – NOT EVERYONE CAN BE A NANNY. At least not a good one.

 

I became hard worker.

To get to the point where I wanted to be and to gain respect I was so eager to get, I pushed myself hard. I read books, watched documentaries, movies, I researched. I worked full time for 2 different families to gain experience. I Pinterested for hours to find the best crafts, sleep and potty training ideas and soon enough, I became what I am now – professional. Yeah, I use simple language, and I don’t have certificate or degree (but remember, I am enrolling this fall 🙂 ), but I am freaking good at this nanny thing.

And when I see I am missing on something, I’ll push, learn and do what I can to become the best I can be. Only after I take a nap with a child, of course.

 

I became tolerant.

I see parents, children and affluent neighborhood’s differently. I saw so many different personalities and ways that parent raise/don’t raise their kids that in this point all of this has shaped me and taught me to be tolerant, accepting and understanding. We are all different. We are all doing what we think it’s the best in the moment.

I see poor rich people, and I see happy poor people. I see parents and I see people who hand their kids over. I see rules, and I see free ranged kids. I judge sometimes. Not because I care, not because I think that people are doing it wrong – any way they are doing it, but by stating my opinion (even when it’s wrong) it will create a space, option and communication with others and it might teach me (or you) something. It might educate me, you or that parent how to be better and happier.

mom and toddler cute fashion

I found my inner child.

In those awkward teenage years and early twenties, everything was revolving about being cool, being grown up.

I focused on being accepted in adult world that I forgot to live. Smile, giggle, tickle, roll on the floor, build a fort and watch a cartoon. Being nanny has made me see things as simple again. In this exact moment, what will make me happy? Yes, I need to pay bills, and I just got a car I can’t afford. And yes, it’s too early and I hate my job sometimes, but in this exact moment if I have chocolate milk and blow some bubbles with my nanny kid – how can that not bring a joy, and silly, instant happiness to both of us?

 

I am more mature (or at least getting there).

This goes along with other things, but I am so different now. I learned what is important, what not. I am choosing things and people in my life wisely, based on their opinions and ways they treat me, their partners, kids, waitress. Growing up, that didn’t matter as much, but now I can see how big impact those small things have.

It taught me what parenting is like.

I know being nanny doesn’t automatically makes me parent, and I never want anyone to assume I am seeing myself that way, but it did show me some parts of what will it be like to a parent.

I get to raise children, explore with them, try different discipline and educational ways and I learn with that. I changed more diapers than most of the parents, I soothed and potty trained more kids and dealt with more poo, pee and puke than what it is normal for a parent.

I feel that gives me some kind of preparation for future. I know it will be harder to deal with kids 24/7 and I am not saying I can ever understand how much harder/better that is – but I am sure being nanny has given me advantage among many.

It taught me how marriage works.

Over the years I witnessed 6-7 long term relationships and marriages that were all unique, but the same in a way. I got to observe family dynamics, arguments, celebrations, happy and not so happy moments and it helped me alter my expectations and behavior in a relationship.

Being a nanny helped me see what is ok in domestic relationship, and what not. It helped me see how much better marriage can be if both partners are equally invested in marriage and in parenting. I believe I am more aware of things that I can do as a partner and parent to make my future marriage blossom.

I got whole new appreciation for dressing up.

Being in yoga pants, barely brushing my teeth and being sweaty, covered in baby puke all day, makes me that much happier when I do get that moment to actually dress up.

Putting make up on, a dress and high heels seems like such a huge deal these days.

 

I don’t mock people who have “baby on board” sticker.

To be fair I really don’t know what is the purpose of those, but I know that 30% of my driving I am not looking at the road, I am passing water bottle, snack, putting Barbie’s clothes back on, singing freaking Elmo Song (Ta da da, Ta da da, Elmo song – I bet you can’t get it out of your head now) and being focused on that nugget in the back.

Seeing that sticker at other cars is like a warning to me “Watch out – Because I am not watching the road at all”.

 

baby sleeping baby photography

Being a nanny showed me so much more about life, parenting, myself, jobs, careers and people than any other job could, I feel.

I am being mocked, made fun of, looked down on, disrespected, underpaid. I got way too many sexual and indecent offers, I had to deal with so many issues that are not mine and day by day, I am growing stronger, better, smarter than I could ever imagine.

 

I am a nanny. Proud, happy, badass nanny, and as one of my Twitter Nanny friends said:

“If you think nannying is not a real job, go tell that to my brand new PAID OFF car”

 

Heck yes!

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25 Comments

  • Reply
    Meredith {MarthaChartreuse}
    July 21, 2015 at 2:21 pm

    I nannied in college and the biggest takeaway has been observing the marriages. I learned so many lessons from these families and hope to implement that if I am every married.

    • Reply
      Funny Nanny
      July 22, 2015 at 11:56 am

      I agree! I feel the same way. It really altered my views on what real marriage is, instead of focusing on what I thought marriage was supposed to be : ) Thank you for stopping by!

    • Reply
      Monika
      October 5, 2017 at 1:34 pm

      Thank you for this article! I go to school full time and work as a nanny full time (sometimes 40+ hours a week) and boy am I exhausted. I feel terrible at times that I don’t have much energy for my boyfriend when I get home. And yes, I totally live in yoga pants and booger shirts. Anyway, thanks for shining a light on the profession. It is HARD, but very rewarding. 🙂

  • Reply
    G Propst
    July 21, 2015 at 4:10 pm

    I always say that being a nanny taught me about the dynamics of a good marriage I would have never learned otherwise.

  • Reply
    Jen
    July 21, 2015 at 5:24 pm

    I can’t believe anyone actually thinks that nannying is NOT a real job – that’s sort of like saying stay-at-home-moms don’t work! I could never be a nanny and I admire you for having the patience to be so great at it. (And now I have a whole new perspective of the “baby on board” cars – thanks, I’ll watch out from now on!)

    • Reply
      Funny Nanny
      July 22, 2015 at 11:58 am

      haha! I am glad 🙂 I am still waiting for someone to give me real explanations why do we have those stickers (except their cuteness:) )

      • Reply
        Alex
        August 10, 2016 at 12:07 am

        So the baby on board sign is actually only supposed to be used when the baby is in the car. It’s for emergency workers to know if there was a baby in the car at the time (if God forbid anything ever happen). Now I know plenty of people don’t use them for that way. They use it as a be cautious cause there’s a baby in the car kinda way.

  • Reply
    Jenni Bost (@jennibost)
    July 21, 2015 at 8:13 pm

    When I read that first line I read it “Being a nanny is a really hard job” and couldn’t agree more… that is until I continued reading and had to go back and reread that first line. I was a nanny for 5 years and it was tough, but SO rewarding. I see those kids growing up now and they feel part mine, which is strange I guess, but also sweet. I often look back at the parents that I worked for and take lessons of their marriage in my own.

    I work with senior living now and my son goes to daycare… I see people in hard positions taking care of people we love. This is not only hard work, but it is the most important work in my opinion. We need to value those who take care of our young and old much more in this society.

    I do have to say that even after being a nanny for that long I was not prepared for motherhood nearly as much as I thought I would be (though, likely more than most). I started being a nanny when the oldest girl was around 1 and then later the twins were born and I stayed with them as early as 6 weeks. I thought, I can handle twin babies, I can surely handle my own kid! Ha! My son was a handful and a half… I went to my doctor in tears asking what I was doing wrong. She laughed a little and said he was just an ultra-tough kiddo and would be a fabulous teenager someday. I asked her for it in writing. 😉 I’m so glad I had the opportunity to be a nanny. It is wonderful reading through your posts.

    • Reply
      Funny Nanny
      July 22, 2015 at 12:05 pm

      I know! I kind of fear of having my own kids just because I am so confident. 🙂 Step by step though!
      I am aware that people will have opinion about any position, regardless of degree or position – and I am very open to it, but when someone chooses to insult others without any reason, that is what affects me.
      Thank you for stopping by, Jenni!

  • Reply
    Create/Enjoy (@SuzannahStanley)
    July 21, 2015 at 9:02 pm

    Those are all super important lessons and benefits!! I have so much respect for people who care for kids all day. I hope I get to do it for my own children sometime, at least for a while. But I know it’s hard!

    • Reply
      Funny Nanny
      July 22, 2015 at 12:07 pm

      I think it is hard, but it’s life, and taking care of a child of your own, I believe, brings special joy and bond that will mute all the hard days and experiences and you will get through it. (I hope I will! I will need at least few years breaks from nannying to recharge : )

  • Reply
    J
    July 21, 2015 at 10:01 pm

    Awesome article!! I love how you wrote that one should not be ashamed of what they do because that is how you give away your power. I totally agree, one of the most rewarding jobs ever – in so many ways!!!!!

    • Reply
      Funny Nanny
      July 22, 2015 at 12:08 pm

      Thank you, J. It means a lot to me that other nannies and childcare providers agree and support this 🙂

  • Reply
    Marlynn Jayme Schotland
    July 21, 2015 at 10:09 pm

    Sometimes I think it’s the cutting comments from strangers that make us reflect on our lives, and I love that you turned a negative comment into a positive reflection. Nannying is a very hard job, for sure! I can’t believe anyone would say any differently.

    • Reply
      Funny Nanny
      July 22, 2015 at 12:10 pm

      I agree. It’s always a struggle for me not to be affected in a negative way. I tend to close up and it affects me deeply, but I am learning. Those negative comments are definitely not reflection of us, but of people who are sharing them.
      Nannying is hard in some ways, but to be honest, we do have some great perks (snuggles are one of them, who gets snuggles from a toddler at their work? 🙂 )

  • Reply
    Jacinta
    July 22, 2015 at 12:50 am

    What a great statement!! you said it all in a such wise way. I saw myself on every single sentence that you have written . Thanks for doing that. Xxx

  • Reply
    Melinda
    July 22, 2015 at 9:02 am

    Great post and I have immense respect for nannies!

  • Reply
    catherinemryan
    July 24, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    NanNoting is a hard and important and valuable job. Taking care of kids isn’t easy but is one of the biggest responsibilities on the planet. I’m glad you’ve come to own your profession!

  • Reply
    Marianna
    October 6, 2015 at 4:45 pm

    I nanny for 3 kids aged 13 mo, 3 yrs, & 5 yrs. I come from a very successful hotel family so I went to school for my bachelors degree in hotel management and planned on working for the family business after graduation. Well.. after I did graduate, I realized working for my father was the LAST thing I wanted to do. I moved home, traveled, did some substitute teaching…still not knowing what I wanted to do.
    Finally I moved to the city and started nannying for the family I’m currently working for and have been for about a year and a half now.
    All of my friends, my boyfriend, his friends are all super successful and like you, I sometimes feel like people think I don’t have a real job and I often find myself avoiding the question “SO what do you do?”. I saw myself in so much of this article!
    My time nannying has been extremely difficult but also very rewarding both financially and emotionally but now I feel like I’m at a point where I want to find what I actually want to do for the rest of my life. I definitley can’t see myself doing this forever.
    My question(s) for you is.. What are you going back to school for? How did you decide that was what you wanted to do?
    I’m so stuck and am looking for any and every bit of advice I can get.
    Thank you!!

    • Reply
      Funny Nanny
      October 7, 2015 at 11:08 am

      Hi Marianna! Thank you so much for reaching out.
      I got lucky I guess. I realized, after trying some jobs with nannying, that this is it for me. I love kids. I love my job. I don’t see myself nannying for the rest of my life either, and I do hope as time goes by things will change, but I feel I have something to offer and I will pursue this until I start resenting it.
      My goal for the future is to open my own in home care, or maybe nanny agency. I am planning to stay in this field, so we will see. I am (very slowly) working towards early education degree. Please email me and we can chat privately 🙂 Thank you for stopping by 🙂

  • Reply
    Siri
    January 18, 2016 at 1:56 pm

    The baby on board stickers are actually so EMS responders know to look in the vehicle for a small child, who may not be immediately apparent! Fun fact!

  • Reply
    Bridget
    September 2, 2016 at 7:43 pm

    I am definitely a better person after being a nanny! You really do learn a lot about families and relationships!!

  • Reply
    Funny Nanny
    September 4, 2016 at 8:36 am

    You are so right Bridget, working with children and their families is a very good way to get insight into how others live and run their lives. All are invaluable lessons!

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