No More Vacation


One Week of Work

I have survived my first week of work and I now remember why I chose to teach older kids: better bladder control. But it's a job that pays the bills and is in my work area, so I am happy with it. But I don't think it will lead to a career change. Oh and I have internet now by the way. So I guess it's been a good week. 

Monday started out beautifully (sarcasm). I started watching the kids at eight in the morning and was expected to watch them until seven. And the kids are lovely. They're cute and very polite. But watching three kids under the age of ten is a handful. We drew pictures, played games, and then disaster struck. The youngest is working on potty training, so I've regularly put him on the little potty, sung songs about pipi, and made noises to encourage him. I put him down for a nap without a diaper as specified by the mother. When I went in to wake him up I catch him standing over his bed pooping his underwear, great! That's why I like older kids. No worries about "accidents." So I clean up his nasty mess, tell him it's not ok, and flush the poop down the toilet. Then the toilet won't stop flushing and it starts leaking internally. Shit! (Pun intended) So here I was with my hands in the toilet trying to stop the leak. I frantically called the parents asking what to do and thankfully they told me to just stop the water and leave it. I have a bachelors degree and a teaching credential but I'm here babysitting children and shoving my hands in toilets. I guess I'll do just about anything to make my dream come true. But other than all the shit, the kids were great and it wasn't so bad. But I did come home Monday feeling very homesick and questioning my decision altogether to move to Paris and take this job. 

Thankfully Tuesday went a lot better and was a lot shorter. I only worked from 3:45 to 7pm with the children. Most of my time was spent trying to get the older two siblings not to fight, giving them a bath, and making them dinner with my very poor cooking skills. But I just ask them what they want for dinner, make sure it's balanced, and then they help me, so it's pretty easy and they can't complain because they made it. 

Wednesday was a little longer. 12 to 7pm because kids only have half days on Wednesdays. And this is the first year of school on Wednesdays, so they were tired. This is what every Wednesday will look like for me. 

Thursday and Friday were long but lifted my spirits and reminded me why I am here. I did the usual 3:45 to 7pm babysitting, but in the mornings I met with all the other babysitters for the agency that I work for. All of them are immigrants from somewhere. All speak English. And we're all learning to adapt to the Parisian lifestyle. Finally I am socializing and starting to make friends. And I love the diversity. It's not just Americans, it's people from England, Scotland, Ireland, even Puerto Rico. We all bringing something to the table and it's inspiring and refreshing to know that I will be learning French with these ladies this year. I even met a girl that lives 20 minutes away from me in the United States. What a small world. 

This week just reminded me of the sewers of Paris
Lets hope that opinion changes

So while my job might be a little below my credentials, it is in my subject area (education) and it's much better than me being a server or working in an office. It's good experience for me to work with different age groups, learn new classroom management techniques by learning how to keep track of three lively kids. 

A lot of people have been wondering what my job is. In the afternoons I am basically an au pair. I watch three kids, feed them, bathe them, and teach them English. In the mornings I either take French classes or do internships in preschools. This is what motivated me to choose this agency because it provides a lot of experience for me to work inside a classroom as well. For three weeks I will work in a preschool then I will switch to French classes, then back to internships. All of this is good for the resume because it will show diversity when I get back to the United States. So there you have it. I've survived and while I had a major bump in the road, I know that this is a job that I can do and will probably have a lot of laughs at. So why not. I can do anything for a year and I think I'll have a good time doing it. 

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