Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Love is a many splendid thing

"The other nannies had warned me about this very moment, the moment when you'll be tempted to break the cardinal rule of nannydom. And yet...I simply couldn't resist. 'I love you'... Three little words made leaving this job 1,000 times harder." Excerpt taken from The Nanny Diaries.

My sweet little Belle, I love you. and I miss you. deeply.

I didn't realize a year and a half ago that you would become one of my best friends, a kindred spirit, so giving, vibrant and purely real. You mean so much to me and my heart aches without you.

I'm beginning to think about what job I want to pursue here. I say think because I can hardly face that it won't be with you. I'm a bit of an emotional disaster! You changed my life Belle. You changed how I feel about myself, family, career, and the course I want to take with my life.

So thank you Belle for loving me and giving me so much. I'm so proud of who you are and for all the glimpses you gave me of who you will become. You are a beautiful person with a beautiful soul and I am forever blessed for being your nanny. I love you!


Gretchen said...

this is such a cute picture. you need to send it to molly! you are an amazing person and you have changed my life forever. i am glad that you are home! i love you forever! mom

romney and ashley said...

She is too cute. What a blessing these little souls are that come so fresh from Heaven!

Molly said...

How do I even begin to write a goodbye letter to you? It feels like a daunting task that will have to be at least 100 pages. It will surely take that to get it right – to say all that I need to say, should say, in order to properly thank you and be sure you know the love and thanks we feel for you. It’s hard to get started, in that it is also incredibly painful. The void our family will feel without you is simply enormous.

Maybe I’ll just blurting it out - We won’t be the same without you. We’ll miss you crazy. We thank you. We thank you for so much. We adore you….

I’ll start at the beginning, Jen, the amount of guilt and fear and sadness I felt when I had to return to work was horrible. I dreaded looking for a nanny. I dreaded feeling jealous of the time she’d get to spend with Halle. I felt mistrustful. I thought I’d be buying nannycams and sneaking home without notice to “see what was really going on.” The whole thing made me sick.

Then I got up the guts to at least look for a nanny and you walked in our front door. We sat down at our dining room table under the teepee light. After five minutes I felt this incredible surprise of sheer joy. I felt as if I’d been sent through the rinse cyle. You left our house and I sat down and processed what had just happened. I’d just met my own Mary Poppins – only better. All my thoughts of trust issues and dread disappeared. I’d just met an honest, smart, educated, genuine, beautiful woman who happened to find her calling with children. And I LIKED her. No way.

After 1.5 years of time with you, almost everyday, I know more about why I fell in love with you that day in April, 2007. It’s because I would love nothing more than for Halle to grow to be a woman like you. Jenny, you exude beauty in every way.

For one, you’re thoughtful. How many times have you looked through activities to do in Bozeman and left us a note on some weekend suggestions. i.e. Saturday is an Easter Egg Hunt at the Museum. It starts at 10, but they suggest toddlers arrive early as it’s packed. Might be fun!

You’re creative. How many little girls have their nannies find old egg cartons in the garbage and turn them into bug mobiles?

You’re generous. I’ve never seen someone put more time and energy into baking for friends and family than you. The cupcakes, cookies, shortbread, caramels, chocolate mousse, cakes, crab cakes, lasagna…. This list doesn’t even cover half of it. We were the lucky recipients of most of the treats. Halle especially benefited. On top of the yummies, you would decorate them to perfection and then wrap them beautifully. I remember the morning you showed up to our house bleary eyed as you and Dallas had stayed up virtually all night wrapping caramels in paper. No one but you….

You’re loving. This is what shows the most in Halle and I’ll never be able to thank you enough for your part in this influence. Halle has become an empathetic, loving little girl who cares deeply for others. Of all things, this is one of the most important to us. Has she ever bloomed in this department or what? I am so proud each time she bumps into someone or gets bumped into and turns around and rubs the other child and says “I’m sorry.” She says it with such compassion! Or, she’ll see another child crying and say “He’s sad. He’ll be okay. He’ll be okay.” She is truly concerned. Environmental. Yep.

You have a natural way with kids. Jen, I have learned so much from you. You’re patience and understanding comes to you naturally. I’m sure Gretchen had a large part in this. The stories you tell about your Mom and Poppy are great. I remember a time when it was virtually impossible to get Halle to be still to have her diaper changed. We were both struggling at the changing table. You suddenly start belting out a song! I was shocked to see my wild child stop and stare at you in amazement while we continued with the diaper change. She was perfectly still. So was I. I was in awe. This is one of many moments you stopped me dead with amazement.

You’re an amazing friend. I surely never expected that you’d become one of my dearest friends. I simply love you to death. We’ve been able to talk like sisters, stay in almost daily contact and truly connect. I hope that we will remain lifelong girlfriends. I know my life is better with you in it. I treasure you.

When I see you connect with Halle I feel like crying. The connection you two have is magical. You are her Bonus Mom. The love that passes between the two of you is wild. In your presence she is a happier child. In your arms she feels safe, loved, and adored. She’s more than happy to echo this back to you. Each day before you arrive we wait on the couch looking out the window for you to pull up. Then she starts bouncing up and down shouting “my Jenny, my Jenny.”

Jen, this just touches on why we love and admire you like we do. We were truly blessed with the beauty of an angel for this period of 1.5 years. I know Halle has absorbed your goodness. You helped introduce Halle to this world and you introduced it to her while emphasizing goodness, God’s grace and love. What more can a parent hope for?

I hope we’ll stay in close contact and that you’ll be able to witness the influence you had on Halle. I hope nothing more than that she’ll grow up to be my little Jenny Despain. I can’t imagine a greater gift.

With adoration,

Brooke said...

She is darling-- how could you not miss a face like that? Best of luck in Utah, I can't wait to read about your new adventures in a familiar place!