Wednesday, December 12, 2007

"Defunked" or "My funk is now defunct"

So here I am complaining about the internet being dead and I am not posting either. I am wanting to take pictures and I just haven't gotten to that yet. But let me just at least say that I am temporarily cured. Yes, I am cured from I-hate-being-a-stay-at-home-mom-itis at least for a little while. But it's highly contagious you know. And it's always going around. So if you have it, or suffer from chronic outbreaks as I do, let me just tell you what is a good cure for it. The Nanny Diaries. Have you seen this movie? It is terrible. I was a nanny and it was nothing so bad as this movie and yet even my own experience was heartbreaking. My experience went a little something like daily trying to pry an inconsolable eighteen month old baby girl away from the back door as she cried and screamed "Mommy! Mommy!" for five months. And then there was another nanny just as there had been before me. Presumably,it would go on and on for who knows how long, every few months a new nanny. It was terrible. I am actually getting choked up as I type. And yet this movie is so much sadder. The brokenness. The hopelessness. Really, don't see this movie unless you come down with a bad case of I-hate-being-a-stay-at-home-mom-itis. Because there is no other reason to see it. It is just sad. And true too. My sister-in-law was also a nanny, and in New York where this movie is set. Her situation was close to an exact match to the story in the movie. Only hers was probably a little worse. There really are strings of strangers raising people's children. And I have the privilege to raise my own, to teach them to read and to count, to hear their first word and see their first step, to know them and their silly sense of humor and enjoy their quirks, to take them to the zoo or the library or the park or even the grocery store. And yes, even to potty train them and take care of them until that blessed day when they are trained, to pick up the plastic stacking rings and the board books eighty-eleven times a day, to mop up their smooshed banana and raisin rejects three times a week (I let it accumulate a little), and remind them not to play with things that aren't toys or to stand on books or leave their shoes on the floor. I feel good about these things. I won't again in a few weeks, I'm sure. Because these are the mundane things. This is the "valley of the diapers." But the alternative is to have someone else be there for them or to not have them at all. And either of those realities is far far far worse than the most disastrous diaper changing or puzzle piece pileup (just imagine trying to sort about 18 25 piece jigsaw puzzles all mixed up together if you are not familiar with "puzzle piece pileup"). So today I feel blessed. Really really blessed. Could this also have something to do with having August playing with a friend all day and Amabel staying at school late for ballet practice? Maybe so. It is definitely easier with just one. And George and I spent most of the day shopping. So I guess that is part of my cure. But seeing this movie really helped with my thoughts and perspective; then the break just helped push me over the edge. However, if I don't get some sleep I will fall right back over that edge, so I am off for now. More soon.

4 comments:

Wrights said...

I haven't seen the movie yet, but I read the book while I was a nanny. It really is so very sad. I could relate to the nanny because I had to do ridiculous things for the rich people (like iron the four foot tall dad's underwear--seriously! but that's another story!) And I remember having to take the little boy to the doctor when he needed his momma. Very sad. So, I often remind myself of the same things, that we are blessed to get to do those things for our children.

katie said...

The movie is 95% accurate. The dads are creepy, the moms are mean and the children have no sense of security or meaningful love (except that of the nanny's). I thought the movie was going to be really funny but it actually brought back some pretty terrible memories of being a mom for someone else's children at the age of 20. It wasn't fun. I could write pages and pages of horrible things that happened while I was there. It was a really bad and eye opening experience. People really live like that.

RHB said...

Thanks for the movie recommendation. Check out Renes's blog for an encouraging note about being a stay at home mom. A wrote her the sweetest note- it made me cry!

Anonymous said...

another way to cure I-hate-being-a-stay-at-home-mom-itis? check out xanga.com/knoxmemories. i read it after horrible days with my little one and it makes me so thankful for even the horrible days.

Blog Archive