Jan 4, 2013

Your Child's First Babysitter

I fully planned on getting back to blogging this week after taking most of the month of December off. My family's continued illness and a tragedy changed that plan. When we had our first child we relied on family as her only babysitters. And since having a new grand baby was very exciting for our parents, they were more than willing to help out. But since Brett's parents live four hours away and my mom has a life (the nerve of that woman) we quickly realized that we needed to find another source for babysitting.

We are part of an amazing church with wonderful young people who are great with kids. At the time we were in a small group with two other kids Isabella's age. When the babies were really little, we kept them in the room with us. As they grew into crawling and babbling babies we hired sitters for our small group, two brothers Jeremy and Jessie.

Brett and I picked up and dropped off the boys every week. We got to know them pretty well during those car rides. They were so sweet and such nice kids always thanking us for giving them a ride. After a few months we became small group leaders for a new group and lost the brothers as our small group sitters, but Jessie continued to watch Isabella occasionally on weekends and later all three kids.

For those of you who have kids, you know that your child's first babysitter is special. This is the first non family member that you trust to watch your child. I know some moms wouldn't trust a teenager (aged 14 when he started babysitting for us) to watch their kids, but Jessie was so responsible and his character was so evident that we didn't even blink. I knew I had nothing to worry about and I never did. I'm still amazed that this young man had a desire to help parents and be with kids. I don't know many teenage boys that want to be babysitters and excel at it.

This week tragedy hit my community when Jessie and his girlfriend were walking on a sidewalk and they were hit by a car. Sadly, Jessie died and his girlfriend is in critical condition. I wish I could express how heartbroken I feel. My heart goes out to my friend who has lost her oldest child, I cannot imagine that pain. And I cannot imagine what Jeremy is going through losing his brother. My brother and I are great friends and my life wouldn't be the same without him. It's just senseless that that something like this would happen. They were walking on the sidewalk! Your kids should be safe on the sidewalk. But the older I get the more I realize that there are some things that just cannot and will not make sense.

I've spent the last few days thinking about what an amazing kid Jessie was and how lucky I am to have known him. I told his mother on several occasions that she has to be friends with me forever so I'll have someone in my life who raised amazing teenagers who can help me through the teenage years. And while I truly believe that my kids don't belong to me, that God has loaned them to me, it's a tragedy like this that drives that point home.

Jessie will always have a special place in my heart.


  1. stopping by from sits girls. I am so so sorry for your loss. So tragic. I babysat a ton when I was younger and I was many families 1st baby sitter and I felt like a member of many families that I cared for their kids. Such a special relationship to be trusted to watch someones kids and care and love for them as if they were your own siblings. Just so sorry that this tragedy happened.

    1. Babysitters do become part of the family. And it's such a special bond to see your kids love their sitter.

  2. That is so terrible and so sad. I am sorry for your loss--for Jessie's family. For the girlfriend. I will never understand tragedy. Sending prayers your way.

  3. How terrible! Sending prayers for his family. xo

  4. So Horrible and sad and tragic. Sending lots of love and strength to your family and to Jessie's family.


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