Take A Moment


And bask in this.

“Have you done that yet,” she asked me over the phone, “when did this conversation happen?”

“About a half hour ago,” I replied, under the partial sunny skies, blue streaking out behind the lengths of clouds.

I was on the basketball court at Mission Pool and Playground with the boys kicking around a soccer ball and corralling them, to the best of my abilities, in a fenced in spot while I made the phone call.

“I hear the boys,” she said, “they sound like they are having a good time.”

They were.

And so was I.

I had just had my “review,” a process that was really quite short and very, very sweet.

The mom had actually said, “can we do this next week? There’s just so much happening today for me.”

I acquiesced, “of course, there’s really no hurry, I just really wanted to talk about dates proceeding forward, I don’t have any thing other than that to bring up.”

“Let’s do it next week, then,” she said, as the dad came into the kitchen.

“Really, we don’t need to, unless there’s something wrong, is there something wrong?” The mom and dad stopped in their tracks.

“No, no, not at all, I, well, I just was offered a ticket to Burning Man and I really want to go and it doesn’t coincide with the holiday time that you are taking,” I said.

I might have blushed.

And may I just say, how nice it is to nanny in San Francisco, where for the most part, the population knows what Burning Man is.

Of course, most of that comes down to a profound relief to be able to find a parking spot during Labor Day weekend in San Francisco, but you know.

“You have absolutely earned that vacation time,” the mom said as she was gathering up the snacks I had prepped for pre-school pick up and grabbing the milk container in the fridge, tossing it all into a cloth Mission Farmer’s Market maroon bag.

“Well, the other thing is that I got my graduate school schedule and I will need to take a week off for the retreat that is a part of the program, adding that to the two days off I’m heading to Chula Vista to see my grandmother, I will have gone over my vacation time.”  I said, “I just wanted to make sure that…”

The mom cut me off, “you have nothing to worry about, we can take the time out of your personal days off for your grandmother, I’m sure you need to talk things through about your dad and we want you to be able to do that.”

I think I might have felt my heart swell two sizes bigger with gratitude.

“I wanted to let you know I can make up the hours, or help out a little more in Sonoma,” I replied.

The family will be going to Sonoma for two weeks in July and another week in August.

Serendipitously, neither Burning Man or my graduate school retreat happen to coincide with the week in August that the family will take in Sonoma before school starts up for the boys.

The youngest will be starting pre-school and the oldest, kindergarten.

“You don’t have to worry about that, we can play that by ear, we will have extra help in Sonoma,” the mom said, adjusting her purse and digging out her car keys, “besides, we don’t want to burn you out, we really like how you are when you are at full energy with the boys.”

“We’ve had four nannies,” the dad interjected, “and you are by far, the best nanny we have ever had.”

“Hands down.”

“Oh, thank you,” I said, “I adore the boys, I really do, I just wanted to make sure that all the scheduling was ok with you.”

“It’s great, we can talk more next week,” the mom rushed out to grab the eldest from school.

“Do you have your dates for school,” the dad asked.

“I do, I can e-mail you the full set of dates, Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 just went up on the site,” I explained the timing.

Three days, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

About every three weeks I’ll be in class.

Fridays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Sundays from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Woof.

The retreat is August 9th through 16th in Petaluma.

The first weekend of school is September 11th-13th.

I’ll have two weekends in October, one in November, one in December, one weekend each in January, February, March, April, and May.

There is no school June and July.

I’ll have “summer vacation.”

Which means I’ll work a lot, but let me to not jump too far ahead.

Pull back.

Bask.

“You’re HP is really working for you, graduate school, Burning Man, the job review, really, take a minute and appreciate what they told you.” She admonished me on the phone.

I am not good at recognizing or accepting this, but as I stay at the work of taking suggestions I have gotten better and it would not be in the spirit of humility to not acknowledge the compliments.

I do a good job.

I do a really good job.

I do.

And as the boys chased a red soccer ball around the court at the playground, stopping once in a while to run up and grab me and tug my hand and engage, I could feel the sun on my face and accept that I am a good nanny.

Doing a good job.

Being of service.

How many nannies pray to be of service before going into work?

Not sure that there are a lot.

Not sure that there aren’t others who don’t, but I really do wish to be of service when I go to work and the pay off is great.

I am loved and I get to love.

I mean I sat under the table in the kitchen today with the littlest guy after his nap before mom got back with his big brother and had a total conversation about his stuffed cat Meow Meow and we sang songs and cuddled and had snacks, well, he had snacks, I wiped snacks off his face, and to have such a tender (though wildly rambunctious at times) little boy crawl into my lap and kiss my face with his cat makes me tear the fuck up.

To not put to fine a point on it.

I get paid to love.

How lucky am I?

And I get to go to Burning Man?

Shut the front door.

 

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