I think this Nanny whirlwind has shaken our little family and we're just kind of dealing with the dust as it settles. Pip - as long as she gets attention and food, she doesn't care who's providing it! So she's just fine and dandy! Moons the other morning had a huge tantrum which is very unlike her. She was screaming and throwing things around her room. She was very angry and I could hear Steve telling her to calm down, he was clearly shocked at her behaviour. For Moons, the Nanny indulged her 'girly' side. She did her hair so pretty with pretty clips and made her feel grown up. She spent ages deciding what clothes to put her in and made a real effort to pick things that there were girly. Which is no mean feat, I tend to put my girls in khakis, jeans, t-shirts, etc. Last longer and more practical (listen to me the Mother hen!). Moons doesn't understand why the Nanny left so abruptly, we told her that her Mummy was sick, but she loved her and would miss her. Moons little lip quivered and she was clearly about to cry. Steve is reeling from the fact we housed a thief! He just says randomly now and again, I can't believe she stole from people. I have taken the 'betrayel' quite personally. I feel that I was merely a pawn in a game and I don't like it. For one, I would like to think I'm a good judge of character, but sadly I wasn't in this case and I feel like I let my little girls down. I entrusted this Nanny with the greatest priviledge of all, looking after my children and she treated me like a fool. I have a real problem with the fact that she brought the stolen articles into our family home. Steve thinks its silly and it shouldn't bother me where the goods were. The fact is, she arrived back from her Saturday job, told us about this 'awful' Mother that drank and smoked too much and how awkward she felt. The whole time Steve and I were saying how bad it sounded, she stood with her overnight bag beside her, concealing this poor woman's things. When I was really ill and I wanted to avoid the cleaner, the Nanny offered me her room to lie down in. She was quite insistant that I not feel uncomfortable and just go and lie down. I wonder now if she was seeking the thrill of knowing that I was lying down near these stolen things? It makes it worse that she constantly brought up the subject of the allegation and talked about how awful it was for her. She wanted to keep going over it with me, I assumed at the time to offload and reassure me of her innocence. And of course, I do miss her. Despite her tendancy to say things a little off the wall, she was funny, she was warm. When I had 'sick' mornings, she would make me tea and always offer to help around the house. When we took her out to dinner and bought her earrings, she seemed genuinely modest. She didn't anticipate being 'rewarded' for all her hard work and celebrated for her birthday. I wonder now if that was a genuine glimpse of raw emotion, or just a master manipulator at work? Who knows? I HATE to use such an American term, but I really feel the need for 'closure.' I did text her to say I didn't understand why she lied to us, but I wished her all the best in getting the help and support and she needs. She replied that she obviously needs counselling and told me she would miss me the most because she saw me as an older sister - to which Steve laughed and said, 'surely she means a Mother? You're too old to be an older sister.' Charming! Since we left I looked over our Telecom account online and was amazed to see absolutely loads of phone activity during times she was supposed to be working. Lasting around 30 mins a time. Fortunately, we have a call plan that allows calls within NZ for a flat montly rate, had we not had this deal our bill would have been high. There were frequent calls to mobile phones, only lasting 1-2mins, but of course, plenty of these do add up. I was so disappointed that she'd done that. I think I may have already written that our electricity bill, usually a maximum of $250 a month, became over $500 for the time that the Nanny was with us. I don't know what she was doing, but we politely asked her if she could be mindful of leaving heaters on and lights on when they weren't needed. She seemed fine, but on Weds when she left, we popped into her room to get the heater for our room and saw it was on. Had we not have gone in there, it would have been on for two whole days and over night until her intended return. Also presenting a safety hazard. Was this our 'punishment' for mentioning the bill? She seemed to do things to get back at people she felt had let her down. I've since spoken with the college about the other family and it transpires that 'CYFs - Child, Youth and Family, the Kiwi social services) contacted the college about the girl because there were some big inconsistencies in her report. So their investigation will clearly be a more 'toned' down affair because their experience means they've spotted that all was not quite right about the allegation. This deeply troubles me. Unfortunately for me, I know these people's names, address and their businesses. It feels like a huge burden. I would never share that information with anyone of course. But knowing them and their business makes it more real and more personal. Not to mention I was the person that heard the sordid tale first and after meeting someone from the college that day about other issues, I felt it important to tell them what she had said. God knows what would happen if she told too many people and it fell into the wrong lap. Small businesses are good networkers here in Welly. Reputation can make or break businesses. Its a small city and as such small businesses operate better when they can get their name and face out there to the ever cynical Kiwi consumer.
Yesterday the family and I took a long drive (this time Steve driving!) to get out to somewhere new. Or rather, somewhere we've not seen for years having already been to every inch of this country. It was another lovely day. Driving back Steve and I were commenting on how badly the roads were lit and how dangerous it seemed. We'd not driven as far as I had, but he said even his eyes were tired from it all. I asked if turning off his fog lights would make much difference to the darkness. He turned them off and the road disappeared!! We were engulfed in blackness!!! His bloody headlights weren't working!!! Full beam worked, but the minute we dipped them, we were relying just on the fog lights. I couldn't believe it! We're lucky that on those two long trips we didn't get a ticket. At least we know now why the lighting at night is so bad! Grrroan!
Anyway, as time passes we're dealing with the lack of presence of someone that we welcomed into our famliy and treated as an addition rather than an employee. Ultimately, she didn't hurt us anywhere near as badly as the other families, so we can be grateful and assume that she must have liked us enough not to cause us any harm. I'm sad to have met someone so angry and bitter at the world and not to have known it. I'm sad that the girls have been left again so quickly. I hope they are able to trust the new Nanny. I hope we all are!