Well folks, I’m back at it, heading out of State and into the wilds of another place. Alabama is a beautiful state full of trees, hills and mountains and is on the coast which boasts of beautiful beaches (or so I’ve heard) There’s hummingbirds, fruit trees, a cute, small city lined with trees and many southern people who are happy to put the groceries in the back of your trunk and ask you how your life is like they are an old friend.
How did I come upon such a job down in the southern state of Alabama? Here’s a crazy, fun story for you:
Since July I have been applying, interviewing, meeting people, asking around for jobs, showing my resume, giving out contact info, praying, seeking, knocking and finding nothing. Oh, I found plenty of jobs but I none of them sat right. They were too easy, the people didn’t want me, I didn’t like the family or situation, they weren’t going to pay me enough, the list goes on.
In August I went to Belize to be a nanny for a week for a family I knew. While there, I was asked if I would pray about being a nanny for a family down in Alabama. I had just began to sit on the idea of living in NY for awhile. I was getting tired of moving. I wanted to be with my friends and family. But hey, I needed a job and I was willing to pray about.
Fast forward to about two weeks later when I got home. I got a text message from a couple (grandparents of the kids that need a nanny) They asked if I would be willing to have a phone conversation with them to discuss the situation. I had a few job leads, but said I would be willing to talk about it. It was a few days later and we had a lovely conversation, I got to tell them about myself and they got to share their heart and why they were helping their daughter find a nanny for her two children.
I was a little skeptical about the whole thing. I had just gotten use to the idea of settling down at home, that I wouldn’t have to move around again. And yet, here I was suddenly day dreaming of packing up and moving to a state and place where I knew no one and nothing. Crazy. It was so crazy. Thankfully I had a handful of friends that were helping me process it and let me talk it out and had me backed in prayer.
After talking with the mother of the children about what life in Alabama looked like and learning more about her children, I began to realize that maybe it wasn’t time for me to settle down home just yet. I had a few jobs that I was looking at getting and when they fell through I gave the couple a call and let them know that I wanted to fly down to meet their family and see about being a nanny for them.
When I arrived I found this mama, strong, independent and single, raising two beautiful children. She’s so patient, free spirited and loving. She loves to laugh and has such a beautiful soul. She works on film and movie sets and is working 12-14 hours a day. While she’s doing that, her parents are helping drop/pick up the kids from school, make meals, have them spend the night at their house if Mama is at work and other.
I got to see the worst case situation which was mama being gone for a couple nights. This meant I had to take the kids to school, stay at home all day with the girl (or drop her off at school where she goes twice a week) And then pick them up, make meals, and put them to bed. Morning, noon and evening we had fun. We played with cars, pretended to be a family, played tag or hide-and-seek. I taught them how to play go-fish and we ran around outside or chilled in front of the T.V.
And then bedtime rolled around. My first night was awful. I tried to put them to bed (the boy went to sleep just fine) but the girl missed her mother and would not settle down. After nearly an hour, I finally gave up and called the grandparents who happened to be down the road at that time. Nana came over and sat the little girl down and talked to her before putting her to bed. While she was in there, I sobbed. I told God that if it was always going to be this emotional and hard, that if she didn’t go to bed for me, I couldn’t take it. After Nana came out we talked and after she left, I went to bed, exhausted from the evening.
But you know what, God is faithful and good and loving. For the next three nights after that, I didn’t have an issue. Sure, they put a fight (“It’s not bed time!” or “I miss mama!”) But they settled right down and were asleep within the next twenty-thirty minutes. I was over the moon in happiness! After that first night, I thought I wouldn’t survive. But God came through and helped me get through it and let those kids fall asleep easy.
Nights weren’t always easy. The kids would come into my room at night and I would miss a couple hours of sleep. Or I tossed and turned for an hour or two before barefeet padded into my room and tried to join me in my bed and I had to try to fall asleep with a child next to me. I didn’t mind until I was yawning the next day from the lack of sleep.
The days weren’t bad either. The grandparents would stop in and see me, visit or bring cousins to play with the younger ones. They showed me Birmingham, parks and hiking/biking trails. I got to see the grandparents house and explore their cute little village with their daughter on a golf cart (that reminded me of Belize.) I didn’t get to take them to the zoo, but that and the science center are within 20-30 minute drives from the house.
Through it all, it was a great experience. The family trusts me with their children, they have asked the kids if they like me and I got a vote of yes from both. Upon returning home, I gave myself a couple of days to think and pray but had peace the whole time. I’m going! I’m going to Alabama, a state and place where I know no one apart from this family but am so exciting! I have peace and know that this is the direction that God is calling me. It’s so crazy, but it’s so exciting. I’m praying that God will teach me a lot through this time. That I’ll gain confidence in new ways, that I’ll step out and make friends and that I’ll find through the hard times there will be growth of flowers and fruit through Christ.
I still don’t know when I’m leaving, but it I’m hoping to be down in AL before the end of the month. I’ll be driving down with my little car with some boxes of stuff. Right now I’m planning on giving myself a year. We’ll see where the Lord leads or if he tells me to stay. But right now, here and now, I’m content to see where what the Lord can do with me and how, through me stepping in to help this family, he in turn can use the family to farther his kingdom.
Until next time,