Blog titles are important. They are sort of like an elevator pitch, reflecting the voice of the bloggers and the vision they intend to create.
What qualities come to mind when you think of the perfect nanny? Mary Poppins – a woman who flew into a family’s life by umbrella and offered a song and a magical fix for every problem – is often considered the cultural icon for modern nannies, but that comparison falls terribly short.
The reality is that nannying is a complex and challenging profession, and those who take it on face tremendous responsibilities. Our employers entrust their own flesh and blood to our care, and give us a place of importance in their lives. We know we are a substantial investment; we know how much faith our employers have put in us. Naturally, we want to go above and beyond to prove ourselves worthy of it. So we strive to be nothing short of perfect, to be supernanny – Mary Poppins herself – and when we fall short, we often feel guilt and frustration.
We (Mackenzie and Kathryn) are both professionals in this industry, and we know those feelings first hand. We have both had many an evening where we rolled into bed (covered in spit up and craft glitter, mind you!) thinking of all the small interactions and potential teaching moments we could have handled better. This kind of self-criticism can easily be taken as just another part of the job, but we are actively pushing back against that. Here’s the deal: there’s no such thing as a supernanny, and Mary Poppins is a fictional character. Nannies are just regular people with a many, many tasks to juggle, and even the most skilled of us will have days where everything just goes wrong.
We decided to call our blog Not Quite Mary Poppins because we are trying to stop striving for “Mary Poppins-esque” perfection. We believe nannies are extraordinary; not because we are perfect, but because we have gifted the families who employ us with a level of commitment, devotion, and attention to detail that is more personalized than one can find in any other profession. We have made it our mission to embrace our imperfections in our professional careers, and to give our charges and employers the freedom to do the same. We hope you’ll join us in that endeavor. Imperfect caregivers everywhere, you are our heroes.
Besides, Mary Poppins had some odd ideas about childcare anyway. (But *don’t ask her to explain them to you).
Mackenzie and Kathryn
*Link via youtube