Last Wednesday I started to write this post, but didn't publish. Some things take time.
Joe just walked out of our house on his last official day of nannying. I don't have a house full of pictures of him. He's never even been pictured on the blog. Most people assume Joe is a Jo, unless they hear him referred to as the manny. All the same, he has meant more to this family than possibly anyone else in the world for three years. He has been our nanny for 1000 mornings. When we go on vacation he misses them like mad. He gave into their nearly every whim for 41 consecutive months and they still went down for nap without so much as a whimper. When I got home from work first, my kids have always smelled like Joe.
There was some crying, more on my part than on his. I tried to let him know what he means to us still. Zayd's parting directions were the best, "Joe! I want to be sure you don't get lost. I will tell you where you are going. You go, left, right, straight, straight, straight. And you'll be there." I am pretty sure those were directions to Gold's Gym, but it was adorable and tear-jerking all the same.
Here is what Zayd looked like on Joe's first day.
Joe took a two week vacation before coming back to work with me through my maternity leave for Zahra. While I could have handled both kids, we believed in being reliable employers. He didn't need maternity leave, so we didn't make him take it. We would switch kids and pretend to be single care givers for those three months.
He is the only one who knows how to get Zayd to eat potatoes (besides Bill Miller), he made my kids homemade tortillas that I will never be able to replicate, they had daily outings to the "store" for Gatorade (whereas I find the store terrifying but figure it is a good experience to see the inside of a gas station with openmindedness). There is just so much Joe has brought to their lives. On his last day I consoled myself with baking a cake. Here are the kids on Joe's last day, standing on the counter onto which they climbed by themselves, eating pretend cupcakes from the silicone baking cups.
Now, after all of that, let me make a little fun of myself. Joe will be here tomorrow to clean our house and he is already scheduled to work Sept 4th. So, I think we are going to manage. But there is nothing like knowing that your kids are OK, and I always had that with Joe.