On Loss, and Nannies
This morning on the phone my mother started to cry. She said, “sometimes I feel like I’ve lost you. You’re so busy all the time.” And my heart tugged, because this is how I’ve been feeling about my own children this week, even though they are only two and four.
Our nanny of the past 3.5 years left yesterday. It’s been a loss I didn’t anticipate feeling. Not only because she was part of our family, for better and worse, for all that time. Not only because my older son said her name before mine (which broke my heart at the time) and because my younger son knew her since birth and was partially raised by her. But because of the milestone this handover represents and the signal to me that it’s one step closer to my boys’ own independence. We’re entering a new phase, where both boys will be in preschool and neither is a baby.
We do have a wonderful new nanny. But as she dropped me off today with my boys in the car, I felt a tug I haven’t felt in years. As a mom who travels a lot, I entrust a great deal in child care providers. This is a bargain I made with myself a while back and came to peace with. Now the process of trusting has to start over again, and it’s painful.