Today, I babysat! I’ll be honest, I was a little terrified. I don’t know why I was so scared. Being left alone with five special needs adults, with varying degrees of abilities, would be no problem. Being left alone with two one year old’s sent my anxiety through the roof! I don’t think my fear was very reassuring for the parents who were leaving their precious child in my “capable” hands.
I think the anxiety started about ten months ago. I started trading babysitting with a friend for short periods of time when Livi was just 3 months old. I was not ready to be babysitting another child yet. I was still feeling out how to care for my own child. I did okay but I was always so stressed out when one child was upset, or when I couldn’t be everything to both children. Being three months apart the two babies were at such different stages developmentally and had very different temperaments. I would be exhausted after only a few hours of watching both babies. Babysitting trading only lasted for about four or five months because my friend started needing more regular care and for longer periods of time. I was reluctant to commit to anything because I was not handling it very well. Don’t worry, both children were very well cared for when I had them… it was just me that was having the problems.
Well, I tried a hand at babysitting again today. Not just for a few hours either. Jude came over for the whole day! I had to do a lot of self-talk last night, trying to convince myself that I could do it with out being stressed. I kept having to tell myself that they where both so much older now and developmentally very close. Jude and Livi are still three months apart but the developmental gap has decreased drastically. They played so well together, aside from Livi hitting Jude’s head a few times trying to get my attention (I think there was some jealousy happening) and Jude pulling Livi’s hair in frustration.
My day consisted of me sitting on the floor supervising while Jude and Livi played with each other and climbed over me periodically. It was a lot of fun! There were no major melt downs. Just a few crocodile tears here and there. It went better than I hoped for! They even had an hour nap at the same time which meant I got to nap! How great is that?! Now that I know I can do it, even have fun babysitting, I will be a lot more confident to say yes to babysitting in the future… maybe even go out in to public with two kids?!
Sorry, no pictures. I did think of it but I didn’t want to push my luck by moving my focus on to anything but them 🙂