26 April 2011

Nannies Don't Take Sick Days or The Sick Kid Circle

Last week Dear A asked to leave an hour early so she could go to a dentist appointment. Sure, no problem, I said, and arranged to start & leave work an hour earlier. The day before her appointment, in passing conversation it came out that her appointment wasn't a simple check up, it was dental surgery to remove a wisdom tooth!!! Dear A, crazy, lovely lady that she is, was planning to have a tooth ripped out Tuesday at 4PM and then return to work 8AM the next day. It actually took convincing to get her to take the next day off. Explaining that she'd be in a fair amount of pain, and be unable to eat didn't convince her. She didn't agree until I mentioned that it might be risky to care for K while on pain meds.

No, I'm not going to go on about the Philipina nanny work ethic. It is what it is. What got me thinking was, does Dear A's crazy high bar for being sick enough for a sick day contribute to the whole sick kid circle we've got going on around here. K gets sick, a lot. And his nanny playdate buddies get sick a lot too. And there are days when I get home and realize sick K has been out with Dear A spreading around his germs. I've actually taken to suggesting K's activities (couch, movies, lots of juice) when I can tell he's culturing some kind of plague because if I didn't, I'm sure he'd be spreading disease all over the bouncy castle at our regular indoor playground.

I actually think this is a lesson all NEWmoms* need to share with their nannies. Empower your nanny to take sick days so that they recognize that everyone, especially kids, are better off in the long run if they bank some couch time when they are sick. And, notice I said empower. I'm not talking about taking back all control. I'm talking about educating and empowering so that you can let go and trust in the long run. (Ok, soapbox put away. Thanks for listening!)

*Nanny Enabled Working Mom

1 comment:

Jenny Hamilton said...

I completely and totally agree. My former nanny was so dedicated that she came to work the morning after her college professor sent her home (at 7 pm the night before). Then baby caught her bug. Nannies need to take care of themselves, too. Thanks for sharing.

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