I am working this week, highly resentful and full of guilt. It is March Break here and while some kids are lucky enough to be sleeping in and going on fun trips (even if just a road trip) my poor kids are being schlepped to daycare for the whole day. It just isn’t an option to take time off work right now, fiscal year end, stakeholder review bleahdeeboringbleah, so the children suffer. I do have Friday off, however, this is the “funnest” day at daycare because, wait for it, wait for it, it’s pyjama day, movie day, and the government stipulated rest time of 1 hour is ignored! Hoorah! The girls want to go to daycare that day just to be able to give mandatory rest time a big fuck you (ahem, my words, not theirs, I hope!)
This brings me to a New York Story. I was staying in the Tribeca/SoHo area, lots of young families around and a couple of parks/schools nearby. My first afternoon there I found my Starbucks, found a park, and positioned myself for some hardcore people watching. Did I spot celebrities frolicking at the park with their young ones? Nope. Was I witness to a crime scene being filmed for Law and Order? Nope. Did I have to fight off talent/modelling agents, telling them I’m just not interested in fame and fortune? Yes, but that’s a given (juuuuuussssssttttt kidding). What I witnessed was the high ratio of little white children to little non-white women. The park was at capacity with nannies and their charges. I started talking to some of the nannies, asking about their jobs and their hours. They laughed at me when I asked what time the parents get home from work and relieve them of their duties. As clichéd as it sounds, the mothers of some of these children did not work. They were just busy with other things (insert nannies eye rolls here). Literally. Shopping, lunching, excercising, committee work, etc. etc.
I don’t consider myself a judgy person, but I can’t help but judge this. I guess I feel pretty raw right now, wishing I could be at home with the kids instead of working period. And these women obviously have the means to be at home, and choose not to. I totally get needing a day/few hours/minutes to yourself, but to engage someone else to look after your children on a full-time basis (some of these nannies see the children wake up and put them to bed) just kills me. I can see an argument against me, asking why I don’t insist on downsizing everything in our lives, but that just isn’t realistic right now, and I do feel the need keep up my “skills” in the workplace because you never know what the future holds – it’s a security thing for me.
Oh, and you should have seen how pimped out these NY strollers are. Probably more expensive than my mini-van!