I remember being asked in kindergarten what I wanted to be when I grew up. I proudly responded, “A babysitter!” From an early age, I have always had a very nurturing way about me.
I started babysitting as a preteen and loved idea of taking care of someone else, making sure they were safe and happy. Of course, the desire of being a babysitter waned as I got older and I took a completely different route out of my central Illinois small town – I joined the United States Navy.
I served as a Military Police Officer for four years. Unfortunately, I was never on a ship to “See the World!” but I did get to live in Italy for two years and Bahrain for a year and a half. Honestly, thinking back, I was very lucky to have been on shore duty the whole time!
However, I did miss taking care of children. While in Italy, I was able to volunteer with the Girl Scouts and read with/to students at the Department of Defense School. I also periodically babysat for fellow sailors’ families that were stationed with them in Italy.
When it came time to separate from the Navy, I had my heart set on being a nanny. I enrolled in The English Nanny and Governess School in Chagrin Falls, Ohio and packed my bags.
The school was an extensive three month nanny training program that prepped me for the life I wanted to live. After graduation, I packed my bags again and headed to Arlington, Virginia for my first full-time, live-in Professional Nanny position. My family had a 10 week old and twin four year olds.
For three years, I was like a third parent in the house providing quality care, guidance, safety, security, education, and, above all, love to the greatest children a nanny could ask for.
After three years, I was ready to go to college and I very sadly left the family to start the next chapter of my life. I began my undergraduate program in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, but finished my degree at Arizona State graduating Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nutrition with a Concentration in Dietetics.
I was not really sure what I wanted to do after graduation, so I went back to what I knew- children. My second Professional Nanny position was with a family who had just had twins born at 32 weeks. I started with them shortly after they came home from the NICU at around six weeks old.
Mom and dad were first time parents, so I helped them transition in parenthood, got the babies on a consistent daily feeding and napping schedule, and took care of everything baby related around the house.
Once the family no longer needed full-time help, I decided my passion was with babies. I learned about Newborn Care Specialists and sleep training and completely fell in love with idea of getting to help new parents and babies as a career.
Getting to educate and help parents, along with loving new babies every 12 weeks, is the most rewarding, thankful profession. I can honestly tell people, “I love what I do and am happy to go to work every night because I am making a difference in someone’s life.”
When I’m not working, I volunteer with Duet: Partners in Health and Aging. I also enjoy spending time with friends and family, cooking, baking, board games, traveling, and watching sports.