Hey everyone! Welcome to the first edition of True Story Tuesdays! These will be weekly posts about true stories nannies have experienced. They can be funny, appalling, sweet, crazy, happy, sad, frustrating, heartwarming, etc. While this blog is primarily resource and advice based, we all have had different experiences as nannies and it's fun to share those experiences. So, with that out of the way, I present to you one of my very own personal nanny stories...
I started a job with a new family. I could immediately tell this family was OCD about certain things, but I was cool with it. I didn't mind following their specific instructions on which color sponge to use for pots vs. plates or having to disinfect all light switches, door knobs, drawer pulls, etc. at the end of each day. You're probably reading this thinking I'm crazy, but honestly, it was really good pay and with a background in the mental health field, I can empathize with being OCD. But I can only empathize to a certain point. At a certain point the micromanaging becomes unbearable and, well, I no longer work for them. While "The Stroller" incident wasn't the tipping point for me quitting, it is one of my favorite stories to share.
Basically, within the first couple weeks of working for this family, they noticed that I wasn't "efficient" enough at opening and closing the stroller. They wanted me to be able to open and close it without ever fumbling. At all. Okay, let's pause for a second. Strollers suck. They are all different and some have like 3 latches/buttons you have to simultaneously engage just to get the thing open. Even if it's a stroller you've been using for years, everyone can relate to sometimes struggling to get the darn thing open/closed! I wasn't familiar with this particular stroller so it did take some getting used to, but I was able to open and close it just like any other normal person. Sometimes I struggled a bit (by struggle I literally mean it maybe took me 15 seconds to open) and sometimes I didn't. But that wasn't good enough. This family wanted perfection. For real. When I quit they even told me they expected perfection and that if I felt I couldn't meet that expectation, then they understood why I needed to quit.
So one day early on into the job, they sat me down for what would become one of their many "chats" with me. This chat was about my stroller inefficiency and how I really needed to work on it. They told me they wanted me to be as efficient as possible, which apparently meant never fumbling. I was then sent down to the garage to practice and was instructed that I could not come back upstairs until I had opened and closed the stroller 3 times in a row without fumbling at all. Guys. I cannot make this up. I promise this story is 100% real. I did as I was told and became an expert at the UPPAbaby stroller...seamlessly opening and closing it at lightening speed. Until one day a few months later, being the human that I am, I fumbled, and it was in front of them. My stomach dropped. Thankfully we didn't have another official sit down chat about it, but they did say "Looks like you might need to go practice opening and closing the stroller again". As soon as we got home, I was sent down to the garage to practice.
Hope you enjoyed reading and your feedback is always appreciated! Also, True Story Tuesdays will be a weekly post so please email me your stories! I have lots more to share, but would love to feature nanny experiences from all over :)
Make sure to check back tomorrow to read: Hermits. It's about parents who never let their nanny go anywhere with the kids and tips on how to best handle this situation.