So now we have someone who sleeps at our place a few nights a week to help take care of Sophia (and the entire apartment it turns out). And boy is it nice.
We actually had her sleeping over on the weekends in January of last year (she’s my brother/sister-in-law’s weekend baba and they were out of town). But it just wasn’t the same, mostly because my daughter was NOT into it. We’d only been in the country six months. At that point, Sophia had been going to a bi-lingual school and not learning much Portuguese. She was still feeling very confused and vulnerable, the baba didn’t understand her, and she wanted to be with her mommy and daddy. It just felt kind of weird (to me, obviously it didn’t feel weird to my Brazilian husband).
But now things are different. Sophia speaks enough Portuguese that she can tell the baba what she wants/likes/knows. But also, the baba is very special.
I still cringe most times I see a kid/s with a baba on the streets. The interactions always appear awkward and unnatural. The baba obviously doesn’t want to be there, the kid wants his/her mom. However, we’ve known this woman for years, Sophia knows her now very well and she is just really GOOD. She is sweet, she is hard-working, she takes initiative and Sophia likes her a lot.
Yes, I know that I have in the past mocked some of the services that are provided by the baba. But today the baba took my daughter to play at the park while I did some writing and had coffee with a friend. Tonight she fed my daughter dinner, gave her a bath and prepped her for bed. That meant I could go to an Anti-Gravity yoga class. That meant my husband could come home and spend some task-free quality time with our daughter. Everyone is happy. Even the baba is smiling.
Yes, I realize this makes me a bit of a hypocrite, although a repentant one.
No, you cannot have her phone number.