There’s another woman in our lives. She’s been a permanent fixture for almost two years now. My man goes to her house regularly. His sister knows her well too. Indeed he loves nothing more than to call to her house.
Before you all go lambasting Daddy Chambers, I am in fact talking about my little man and his other woman. I’m talking about Aidan and Sarah’s second mammy; their childminder, and a woman I quite simply couldn’t do without.
I’m not great at saying my feelings out loud sometimes but if I was I’d tell the other woman just how much she means to all us Chambers’.
As my maternity leave with Aidan neared an end I had to go in search of someone to look after him. Creches weren’t on my agenda so I went looking for a childminder and dreaded the thoughts of it. I met with two ladies; the first a perfectly lovely woman and then I came face-to-face with the ‘one’. I instantly knew she was the woman who would look after my precious first born. The freshly brewed coffee and homemade scones on her kitchen table sealed the deal! I was so relieved that my search wasn’t labourious.
Aidan has been with the other woman ever since and in June of this year she took Sarah under her wing. As a ten-month-old, my youngest isn’t quite proficient in verbal communication but each mid-week morning when the other woman opens her door Sarah outstretches her arms and almost leaps out of mine to get to her..
Aidan, on the other hand, is well able to talk. There are no mistaking his feelings for the other woman. He adores her. Luckily I’m not the sensitive sort because most evenings when I collect him he bawls his eyes out when he has to leave the other woman’s house. At weekends he frequently looks to go and visit her and cries if we pass by her neck of the woods without stopping.
The other woman is their second mammy. She doesn’t just mind Aidan and Sarah, she treats them like one of her own. And speaking of her own, her children have embraced my two like siblings.
In two years I don’t recall ever getting one phone call from her while at work. There’s never any drama. She’s cool and calm, which is no mean feat when you have Aidan to look after! She’s a natural. She juggles her own children, mine and others at times with remarkable ease. I’m literally dumbfounded by it sometimes. Nothing seems to be an issue.
One evening recently when I collected Aidan and Sarah she mentioned she had been out to do her weekly grocery shop earlier in the day. No big deal you might think. But she did it with six children in tow. Superwoman is actually alive and well in Newbridge! The thoughts of that has me breaking out in a cold sweat! At a push I bring one of mine to the supermarket!
When the weather is fine I hear Aidan out in her back garden playing when I pull up to collect them and he always seems to be roaring his head off laughing. I suppose that’s the bottom line; he’s so so happy there and I’m so happy he’s there.
The cost of childcare in Ireland is a hot topic and yes it’s is mega expensive but I personally won’t be searching for the lowest bidder.
So to you other woman, we are so amazingly thankful to have you in our lives. If Carlsberg did childminders …… well you know the rest!
Now, moving on and changing tack, last week I wrote about ‘operation lose the spare tyre’ and about how I’ve embarked on a twelve week fitness and healthy eating course with mammy fitness expert Brid McGill from Fit With Brid. Well, I’m pleased to say I’m still on course and I’m still managing to find time for my 40 minutes of exercise five days a week. I usually do it after the kids go to bed but last Saturday I attempted to do it while they were up so I could have an evening off to relax. Eh bad move!
Sarah, from the comfort of her highchair, thought I was hilarious as I buck leaped about the place in front of her. The other fella though wouldn’t give me a minutes peace. I finally gave up when he hopped on my back as I was mid-plank. Those bloody things are hard enough without adding a two-year-old in to the mix!