By Jaime K. Teich Krinsky
Trusting someone to care for your child is not easy. Between the horror stories you hear from friends or on the news, and your own personal struggles to separate from your little ones, the process of finding the right nanny is complex to say the least.
My own nanny search began when my grandmother, who watched my son twice a week, headed south this winter. After much consideration (and anxiety, fear and finally acceptance), I realized I needed a nanny. This would be the first time an outsider would be caring for him, and although I could read every how-to-pick-a-nanny article out there, I preferred a holistic approach to find that one person who would offer support, empathy and compassion for me and my baby. It turned out that all I had to do in order to be most comfortable was simply trust my instincts.
Here's a few tips to guide your own nanny search.
- Think about what you want. When it came to what I was looking for, the long list of adjectives continued to grow, priorities jumbled in my mind. When I was able to focus and go within, the drive to be comforted by her smile started to resonate. Since I was searching for a nanny online, I had solved the first step -- look only at profiles that had a picture. Yes, I started my nanny selection based on what she looked like. It felt as if I was on a match.com hunt to finding my spouse, (which coincidentally was a much easier task than this nanny thing), but if I didn't have a visceral reaction to her smile, I wasn't interested. Next!
- Email correspondence. Once she passed this test there was the...
Only two nannies made it through every step. I called the references, more so to be able to say I did. Watching these young ladies interact with my child, and in turn my child interact with them was all the proof I needed. My grandmother stayed in the room as I intermittently left to deal with "work" as I wanted to see his reaction to me not being there, and subsequently their reaction to his potential meltdown. Seeing them engaged, watching how the possible nanny worked with him, followed his cues, stayed in tune with him, delivered me the comfort that only watching my child with his new nanny could provide.
Once both final interviews concluded, it was very clear who we were to hire. My child responded strongly to both, but one stood out. Luckily for me, it was the same nanny that had set everything immediately inside me at ease.
If there's one thing I learned along the way, it's that just because an expert offers a suggestion, I do not need to conform myself into doing it their way. And same goes for you! If there's one thing you can take from me, it's to trust yourself, listen to your heart, and set that mama intuition free!
This piece was originally published by Jaime K. Teich Krinsky on Well Rounded NY. When she's not immersed in the world of digital marketing, Jaime can be found meditating, steaming and pureeing organic squash, or dancing around the kitchen with husband Lee and baby boy Cal. Inspired by her new mama glow, Jaime has refocused her freelance writing efforts in supporting new parents on their journey to parental empowerment.
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