We could not be happier to welcome Jéssica to our family in less than two months! Since Match Day, we had been searching au pairs through Au Pair Care (chosen mostly because it is the agency one of my mentors uses). There were many people who looked kind, responsible, and capable. But when Jéssica’s profile popped up in my search, something clicked. Her photographs looked not just friendly but genuine. Her profile description didn’t seem canned.
Jéssica is from Santa Catarina, a state in southern Brazil. I have vague memories of my girl scout troop representing Brazil for World Thinking Day when I was in second or third grade. I think I attempted to make a mosaic out of poster board; we might have cooked good food. Clearly we know not nearly enough about Brazilian culture and stand to learn a huge amount from Jéssica. Although she would like to practice her English (which, we learned from our interviews with her, is already excellent), it will be wonderful for John’s grandparents to be able to speak Portuguese with her.
There are certain details about her personality–her likes include cooking, hiking, dogs (she has one named Marley), and of course children–that resonate with the jive of our family. Per her own admission, she talks a lot (she will fit right in!). She has a degree in nursing and experience driving in New York City! She has two older sisters. And her family is very important to her.
“On paper” she looked awesome. But it was our interview with her that did it. We skyped with her twice, but I think John and I both knew it was her (if she would have us) within a few minutes. She is warm, playful, thoughtful, and sincere. And she won several smiles and giggles out of both girls–rare feats when so close to nap time.
We received her travel itinerary today–it all feels very real! I admit, a little bittersweet. While there is nothing wrong with more people loving on my daughters (thanks for the reminder, Mama Mills!), and I am sure she’ll quickly become part of the family…my transition from being full-time mom to working 60-80 hours a week will take some adjustment. I want my girls to love Jéssica (I’m sure they will), and I hope she loves them. But it’s gonna sting the first time I see Ari run to her after she falls down, or Evie reach for her when she’s hungry.
And, again, 80 degrees but insists on a wool cap. Oh, my heart.