There’s a reason a whole post is dedicated to my new babysitter.
Because she is freaking awesome.
She had me already from first impression. Her soft spoken and sweet demeanor makes you warmed up to her too. She gives off an aura of peace and despite having 7 kids, they all seem well mannered and disciplined. (no tv until they finish homework on a friday night! imagine that!)
Let it be known, no matter how socially apt my son seems, he is not easily taken with strangers and do not react too amiably to being left alone with them. In fact, he can be rather difficult. Surprisingly he warmed up pretty fast with Kak Aisyah. It took him a week to stop crying with my last babysitter (another God sent) which I was hugely relieved for because he was crying and clutching at me not to let go for a whole year with the first babysitter (obvious tell tales among others). But with Kak Aisyah, it took him but 3 days. By the fourth day, he was willingly saying “okay, all right” as opposed to the first three day’s of “tamao!”, when I tell him “esok adam pergi rumah ummi lagi ok?”. He may have continued to look sulky for a week more or so after that, but despite the sour face, he no longer cried and willingly extended his arms to be taken in by Kak Aisya.
Its only been a month now since he first started with the new sitter. Nowadays when I drop him off, he even gets excited to go off. Occasionally he jovially greets the sitter “Ummi!” whenever he gets there and Kak Aisya comes to greet and meet him at the door. He still gives me the customary, salam-hug-kiss routine but in his hype to meet up with friends, he now tends to forget his goodbye waves and flying kisses. I’ve had to repeatedly call his name to get his attention in order to make him wave and fly kiss me. It’s like he even forgot I’m still there. I feel so “loved” (mommy sulk). Yeah so what I’m a needy mom and am not ashamed of it.
Kak Aisyah was duly impressed with my boy also. She occasionally tells me how well he eats with the spoon (with most of the food ending up in his mouth rather than all over the table), how chatty and smart he is with animal picture books, and when he sang the “Ibu” song that his dad and I taught him, for them, she told me he could sing well and was impressed. In fact a week ago, she asked me how do I feel so far sending Adam with her, is Adam okay with it so far? Like she wanted me to give an open evaluation. What else could I say, kids dont lie! If they’re taken with you in such a short period of time when by nature they are usually rather difficult, then you must be doing something right by them – and in this case my son. Kids they know these things. They dont hide feelings. The short-short amont of time when I’m around occasionally dropping and picking my son from her place and staying a while for chats, I could already see how attentive she is towards Adam. She pays attention. And she cares about his feelings. Not all babysitters cares about the feelings of the kids they sit for, most of the time, they’re just careless. They just do babysitting. Not exactly babycaring.
Sure she told me earlier on that she needs us to pick Adam up if possible by 7pm latest cause she has her own kids to settle for tuition and ‘mengaji’ classes after that. But that’s small matter. The lady has 7 kids. Its not hard to imagine her needs for personal family management time. I mean even you want to be off work by 7pm. So you really couldn’t expect much more than that or that would be asking for too much. Taking care of hyperactive kids throughout the day is not easy work.
I am well aware of the slightly compromised health risk being in a household of plenty of kids. But its a risk I am willing to take, especially since the sitter keeps the place clean all the time (seriously, she does. The first thing I realized I liked so much when we first went to her house to meet and chat). Plus, the fact my boy comes home everyday, looking and smelling like the heaven that he is, always. And he’s happy. He’s got friends (whom he sometimes rave about coming back home cause he can remember almost all their names). He learns sharing. Did I mention she is an ex-smart reader teacher who has ample teaching materials, flash cards and smart reader paraphernalia? So my son now has much better language skills, with lots of new vocab. He learns new stuffs like folding papers into boats and jets. He learns to do thumbs up successfully. He comes home with new impressive abilities that me and hubby knew we didnt teach. And have I mentioned he’s happy? Oh yes, I did, He is HAPPY!
By the way, John Medina in his brain rules for babies also state at this point in time in a child’s life, it is good that he has many friends. That will eventually translate to a lot of happiness. And a happy baby is a healthy, smart baby!
Hence a whole post for a baby sitter that I am thankful for.
People tell me dont feel comfort too soon, sometimes counting chicks before the eggs hatch is presumptiously unhealthy. Some ask me to do spot checks once a while, come back in the middle of the day just to check on my boy cause sometimes no matter how great the sitter seems, there are bound to be things you may cringe when knowing of how certain things are done with your kid. These are well placed concerns. I do keep them in mind. But on the whole, seeing how happy my son is, how well taken care of he is for now, how impressively more creative he gets daily, I will “bersangka baik” with her too. I think I may have less cause for concerns because my son is honest. He usually tells when something is wrong or when you ask him about it. At the very least he cries (or wails) over it – things I have not seen him do with regards to Kak Aisyah. So I guess, I’ll be thankful first. Ideal babysitters are not easy to find. Kak Aisyah is as good as it gets for me..