Over the holidays, my husband and I had to go to the Mazda dealership to talk about our lease options, since the lease ends in February. We had to bring our two-year-old Mary, as no one was available to watch her. We were apprehensive about bringing a toddler to car negotiations, but what could we do?
Upon arrival, the dealership was nearly empty, since it was the day before Xmas eve. I held Mary by the hand and the three of us walked in. She had been a little grumpy in the car, so I was bracing myself for a tantrum. But then, something amazing happened: Since it was so slow, one of the saleswomen asked me if I wanted her to sit and color with Mary while my husband and I discussed our lease with our salesman. I swear, she must’ve seen the panic in my eyes when Mary refused to sit down, claiming she wanted to go play by the xmas tree. This lovely woman, whose name is Michelle, sat and entertained my daughter for a good hour and a half. It gave me peace of mind, and my husband and I managed to have a productive discussion.
Why am I writing this, you may be wondering. I know, the child care was out of the kindness of a woman who has her own toddlers at home, who clearly knew the feelings I was having. She did this because she wanted to help us. I am writing this to prove that child care is needed everywhere. What would we have done if the dealership had been busy? Or not even busy, if someone had had an appointment with Michelle that morning? I know what would have happened: one of us — probably me — would have had to entertain Mary.
Think about it. How often do we, as parents, find ourselves in these situations? Where one of us gets to be the adult, and the other gets to be the child’s entertainment? Wouldn’t it be nice and less stressful for everyone if we could walk into a place like a car dealership, and see that they have someone on staff to watch kids for an hour or so. They could even have “child hours” for families who want to come in, in the evening after work. It makes sense: car shopping is already stressful. If you have help with your child(ren) while negotiating, you’re less stressed out and it’s easier to focus. Makes sense, right?
Flexable wants this to be reality. Kids are a part of life, we can’t just ignore them. I want you do ask yourself, Where would I like to see childcare? Ask yourself, Where do I need childcare? You shouldn’t apologize for asking for it.
I also want to know about those of you who experienced something similar to me, where someone provided childcare for your kids out of the kindness of their heart. What did that do for you? What were you able to accomplish because you had support?
We want to hear from you. Share with us your stories on Twitter @Flexablecare, or on Facebook, or you can email them to firstname.lastname@example.org It’s time that we support parents, and recognize the need for #childcareeverywhere™.