The wows and woes of babysitting | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, June 28, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, June 28, 2018

The wows and woes of babysitting

After you are assigned the responsibility of taking care of a baby, the good and bad sides of the task start to unroll. Like a rollercoaster ride, it has its highs and lows.

WOWS:

Spending a decent portion of time being a babysitter can cheer you up and make up for the void of a younger sibling you wish you had.  It helps you steer clear of the monotony of your earlier routine, enjoy the company of mischievous kids, and laugh at the absurdity of their absurd jokes.

The best part about babysitting is that you get to observe the innocence and charm that ooze from a kid. Their habits take you back to your childhood, making you recall how relatable they used to be. You also get to watch them act on their newly grown habits while failing miserably and still not giving up.

In the span of babysitting, instilling good habits in a kid is something that can make one feel proud of oneself. When an unruly kid becomes really docile and composed, the credit is all yours. You are happy with your work. The kid's parents are happy too. It is a win-win situation.  You can hear the neighbourhood singing your praises. Or you can hear your relatives calling you an embodiment of good values.

When you deal with kids for a long time and their behaviours give you a hard time, you automatically learn to manage your anger, be patient and disciplined. You establish the sense of caring, keeping a lot of factors in mind.  So you get to develop important qualities in the process as an end result. Plus, those kids remember you in a good light even though you stop babysitting them. Consequently, you end up creating such a healthy bond through this responsibility that you become one of their favourite people. Of course, you will not be reaping this advantage if you are a horrible babysitter.

WOES:

A baby appears to be all fun and games until you take up the task of babysitting.  Forget about resting when you are dealing with a small baby. It will cry frequently, driving you away from the couch where you were comfortably settled on to the kitchen for food. It will make you carry it most of the time. This is probably the worst part. Imagine your eyelids struggling to stay apart and on top of that, you are rocking a baby in your arms.  In my personal experience, only carrying the baby was not enough. I had to walk the whole house because it wouldn't stop crying loudly.

Other than calming the baby without knowing the apparent reason as to why it is crying, changing its diaper often can be daunting too.  There is the “ew” factor and then there is the art of understanding the structure of a diaper.

You know you are in trouble when the baby is asking for food. It means you have to run after the baby to feed it. A task that is usually completed in five minutes will take around twenty.

Rebellious kids are the hardest to tame while babysitting. They will do things they are clearly forbidden to do. If they end up doing damage or hurting themselves, the blame is all on you. Hence, you have to try really hard to make them obey you.  Congratulations if you have ever managed to keep up a good impression in front of the parents while dealing with the rebellious kids.

Babysitting won't make you feel 'at home' especially when you are habituated doing a lot of things in your house that are not friendly for the kids. It is because you have to keep your behaviour in check around them. If you don't, they will point out that one bad word you used and ask their parents for its meaning.

Babysitting will make your neck hurt, hands go numb, and ruin your short naps. Regardless, it is a good way to challenge oneself with tough circumstances and be in the shoes of those who have to handle kids all the time.

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