Tuesday, June 9, 2015

My VERY PERSONAL Reason for Becoming a Full-Time Nanny

I have openly shared with ya'll my Nanny journey. How I started out in the nanny field, me not wanting to be around kids anymore, my return to the nanny field, and how I ended up with my current full-time nanny position. All of these things are true and so much apart of my life's journey yet there is another story.

A story that I have been hesitant to tell, embarrassed to share, scared to write down.

A story that I am deciding needs to be told. Not so that you will pity me or feel sorry for me. I share these next few posts so to resonate with someone out there struggling through similar or the same experiences. To help someone, nanny or not, know they are not alone. That this fight is conquerable.

My story is one that goes back to middle school, sitting in the front row of band class one spring morning looking down the line at all the other flutists and clarinet players. It was shorts season and all the other girls seemed so tiny. As I looked down at my bigger athletic soccer thighs the fight against healthy body image began. They are all so thin, when did I get so fat


That is what 6th grade athletic me thought - just because I wasn't a size zero. My Dad was an advocate of sports, so it wasn't like I sat around doing nothing all day. Soccer was my main sport, but I dabbled in softball, basketball, hockey, volleyball and spent all day every summer in our swimming pool. Middle and High school summers were spent sweating my butt of in 90 degree weather for soccer practices. Winters were spent attempting to maintain my physical activity to stay in shape for soccer. 


My parents aren't crazy skinny but they are by NO means over weight. They have always maintained a healthy life style with good foods and weekly sports. My Dad not only coached but played hockey a few days a week, while my Mom went on long walks 4/5 times a week. Somehow I still would look at my stomach without the wash board abs and thought I was over weight. As the other girls on my soccer teams openly ran around on those 90 degree days in sports bras I conscientiously kept my stomach covered. It never once crossed my mind that we were just built differently. 
Pre prom picture with my brother

One memory is forever engrained in my mind, the night of my 8th grade winter formal. I remember looking at a picture of me with three friends and a thought lingering, look at my arms - they are so big, why can't they be smaller. It didn't help that my best friend through middle and high school had completely different genetics than me. She was lucky if she could fit into a size 0. She ran track and swam, I played soccer and ran. But we looked so different. I could barely squeeze into a size 6 and she would be swimming in a size 2. Now days both of her parents are hitting 60 and still as thin as they were at 30. 


High school came and went quickly but it did nothing on my self esteem. Even during 2-a-day practices throughout the summer I thought I was over weight. My thighs were always too big, my stomach never flat enough, and my arms always a bit too flabby. 

After a long day of soccer practices.
College started with me entering the best shape of my life. I played soccer for a college team - hit the gym several times a week, ran miles upon miles every day and still I felt fat. All because I couldn't fit into the size jeans I wanted to. 


I could sit here blaming the media, magazines and TV shows for flashing images of 1/2 naked, Photoshopped, starved women. Saying that my poor body image is because of being bombarded with pictures fake women. But I really can't. I was a pretty sheltered child when it came to main stream media. I never really compared myself to models but to friends and women around me. I wanted to be like my sister who was a gorgeous, tall, size 2 basketball star who could have been a model. I wanted to be like my best friend who never had to worry about what she ate. I had an image problem.


One of my senior pictures
Photo Credit to Joe Scinta

A year after my senior prom a younger friend, who I considered to be skinny, asked to borrow my prom dress. It was only after she called me and told me that she couldn't fit into it because it was too small that I began to realize I had an image problem. I talked to my boyfriend at the time about this, he confirmed that I was in great shape. He admitted that one of the reasons he was first attracted to me was because of how good of shape I was in and that in the 2 years we had been together I had gotten in better shape. But I still don't have a flat stomach and my thighs - these dang soccer thighs!

It was time to start looking back at pictures. I looked through middle school and high school photos, senior prom, senior pictures, photos of a missions trip during college. Genuine surprise started to over come me. I was skinny. Like healthy skinny. My arms weren't that big at all and my stomach actually was thin, it didn't hang over my pants at all...so where did this self loathing come from? 

I wish I could tell you that thoughts about my body changed quickly; that immediately I began to stop picking apart my body. That I figured out why I struggled so much in believing that I was a healthy young woman. 
A picture that I looked back on, remembering think my stomach looked to flabby


However, I can tell you that if you stick around later this week for part 2 and part 3 this personal journey ends up with me taking a nanny job on the complete opposite side of the country. I will share with you more about my struggle to maintain healthy body image, it's collapse and the 2 years it has taken in a new environment to re-build my self image.

ceconner© 6.8.2015

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