Our nanny started with us when the twins were just 15 weeks old. I want to say it was through divine intervention that we found her, but I know that it was because my husband, Andy, and I had a plan, set forth high and well-defined expectations in our nanny contract, and approached the hiring decision as a team.
In addition to being a great twin father, Andy was also a great read of who would be the best addition to our family—particularly when I was sleep-deprived and a complete emotional wreck about the thought of "leaving" my 15-week-old babies to return to the office. Our nanny was a perfect fit with our family.
Then, two years later, we had to say goodbye to her.
Anyone who has had a fantastic nanny experience knows how hard this is.
No Longer Babies
We knew it was coming. The twins were growing and ready for more structure, and we wanted to provide them with a deeper learning environment.
Nevertheless, it was not easy for us to think about changing our routine and, more importantly, losing the amazing bond that we had with our nanny. She had become a role model for my daughter and a touchstone for my son at the playground, at the library, and at home when sometimes, quite frankly, they just wanted to be rotten.
She at times took care of them when they were sick, often made sure their nails were trimmed, and always "parented" them as we had hoped. But we knew deep down that the twins were becoming children—no longer babies—and with that comes the need to begin educating and teaching structure.
Ready for Preschool
One day, our nanny asked me if I thought the twins were ready for preschool. My heart skipped a beat, knowing that if they were ready we would soon be saying goodbye. But I knew in my heart of hearts that it was time.
I told our nanny the honest truth—that they were on a list for a preschool and that we were waiting for them to get in, which could be utterly unpredictable. She nodded and said, "This is a good thing, Carrie. They are ready."
Her response confirmed for me that our sweet nanny always, always had the twins' best interests in mind and indicated to me that she was ready to move on in her own career.
A few weeks later, the twins were accepted into a Spanish immersion preschool. As soon as we received the start date for the twins' enrollment into their school, we provided our nanny with her last day so that she could begin planning for her own next steps.
A New Normal
Since we said goodbye to our nanny, we have entered into our new normal. And though it is different now, it is amazing nonetheless watching the twins make friends, respect their teachers, and learn as only wide-eyed 2-year-olds can. They love school already.
It was time for us and the twins to take this step. Our hope is that it will pay off and that we will look back as working parents and realize that this decision was a good one, even though it was very, very hard to say goodbye to our nanny.
We hope to schedule some play dates with our nanny once the twins adjust to their new routine—maybe a playground meet-up and then lunch. If these sorts of play dates happen every six weeks or so, it will be a really nice way to keep in touch.
Want more Carrie? Follow her many musings, and check back often as the list will grow! You can also follow her on Twitter.