Many are surprised that we seem to be pulling it off just fine. Nobody could have believed that I would survive that long since I have zero (0) domestic skills. But we're fine. We're fine.
Living without a yaya around could pose a big problem for many household, and we understand them really well. We're just very fortunate because our schedules are tailor-fit for our family.
|No yaya? No problem!|
First, we do all the chores ourselves while rearing a baby who's fuelled with millions of energies, so that could be a little tiring. Nope, a LOT tiring at times. Imagine coming home deadtired from work and the traffic, and you still have to wash the dishes and put the baby to sleep. Of course, we still have to clean the flat, fix the bed, cook, and wash the clothes. Therefore, to minimize our chores, my roommate and I just send our dirty clothes (minus the undies and baby Charley's dresses) to the laundry and simply buy our meals from our friendly neighborhood carinderia (except baby Charley's meals, of course!)
Second, our couple time sometimes mean couple + Charley time. It's hard to go on a date with just us because we just can't leave baby Charley alone in the house because it's illegal...and it's not safe. and it's illegal. Even if we wanna watch a movie or hangout with friends, we have to schedule it really really well because no one will be left with Charley, and there's NO WAY I'm gonna make her bilin to the kapitbahay. To solve this, we sometimes use "lola time" to get away, I mean to have a break from baby Charley. Recently, we went on an afternoon date and watched the "Love Affair" with just us. And boy, it feels good!
|aaaww, we've seen this little seed grow!|
Third, we're usually affected with a curfew, baby Charley's curfew. Whenever we go out with friends, we have to explain to them that we gotta end whatever date we're having at 6pm because Charley has to sleep at 6pm. Otherwise, she's gonna be grumpy and would turn exorcist mode. If only, we have a yaya around, we could have stayed a little bit longer and a few drinks more.
Fourth, sometimes we're just being lazy or sleepy to move that it would be nice to have someone to take care of Charley especially when she wakes up at 4:30 in the morning. There's no doubt that baby Charley is a morning person because no matter what time she goes to sleep the night before, she's gonna be awake at 4:30 or 5:30am, and she'll be in full energy until around 10am for her morning 30 minute power nap. Unfortunately, my roommate and I love to sleep...at least an hour longer. However, because we dont have a yaya, we have to wake up with her and put her out of her crib; otherwise, every one who lives in the 4th floor will be awake because Charley would be talking and screaming nonstop.
Although our lives would have been so much easier with a help around, I think there are also a number of advantages of not having a yaya.
|We're happy with just us!|
First, we know everything about Charley. Besides her schedule, we also know what Charley likes and hates to eat, her favorite toy, her poop schedule, and basically all about her. This has proven to be very helpful especially when we had to bring her to the doctor when she got sick. Because we're the ones taking care of her, we could tell and explain in details everything that has happened to Charley. Oh, not to mention, I'm super OC pa, so our beautiful pedia, Dra Pam Caedo of Makati Med, got surprised when I gave a tabulation of Charley's temperature, poop, and actions we took for a 24 hour period. Should we have a yaya, we would be getting these pa from her, and mommies, we could not be sure if she could record data as OC as we could.
Second, we're raising baby Charley the way we want to. Gosh, we have received a number of advices on how to raise a child, and some have doubted the way we're taking care of and raising baby Charley, but she's our kid so it's okay if she doesn't co-sleep with us, thank you very much. Also, we're instilling in her the values we want her to grow with; for example, the mano po and praying before meals and before going to sleep. We read her books, talk, and play with her, and we make sure she'll get zero or at least minimal screen time (from gadgets and TV's). I've heard many horror stories about kids raised by yayas who grow up not the way their parents want them to be and kids who are glued to TVs with their yayas because that would keep them quiet. I'm not saying all, but let's be realistic, there are some.
Third, we're not afraid to let Charley be Charley. Our child is a very curious persistent individual. There are no cabinets and drawers left unchecked and anything new must be inspected then chewed. We also allow her to crawl and cruise her way around the flat. Sometimes, she would bump her head or fall while trying to walk, but they're just fine with us. Because of these, I could say that as a baby, she's confident and is not afraid to try on new things and explore her world. The other baby I know, who's raised by his yaya, hasn't even learnt to crawl or stand up on his own yet. His yaya is afraid that if he gets bukol, she'd be scolded. Sadly, that's a reality for some.
|there are dishes to be done, but selfie first!|
Fourth, we are baby Charley's comfort zones. Oh it feels so good as a parent if you know that your child would run to you because he/she feels safe to be with you. Baby Charley is like this to us, and I'm happy that right now, we're number 1 to her (okay, prolly I'm # 2 next to her daddy); some kids kasi would prefer their yayas over their parents and I have seen this personally with some of our girls in school.
Fifth, we only have to deal with three different personalities everyday. A yaya is another personality in the household, and since it's just us, we would only be dealing with each other. At least, we don't have to make pakisama with another person. It's liberating actually to be ourselves all the time in the flat.
Sixth, it's cheaper. Yaya's service is quite expensive, and I'm a bit of a kuripot. Imagine paying Php 3,500 to Php 5,000 (+ PAGIBIG, SSS, Philhealth, etc.) to a yaya whose job is to feed Charley, give her a bath, change her diaper, and put her to sleep. Our flat is a small, so she won't be having difficulty cleaning it. She won't be cooking or doing the laundry as well. Thus, I don't think it's practical or economical to hire someone to do the things we enjoy doing...except the poop part.
Finally, we literally see baby Charley grow right before our very eyes! My roommate and I have been pretty hands-on with Charley ever since she's born, so we have seen how she's grown from a tiny infant who couldn't move much to an active likot toddler she is now. We were there when Charley first said a word, (opo) till now that she won't just stop talking gibberish. We saw when she first made dapa on her own, when she first started crawling and standing up and when she first tried to walk on her own. We're there when she lost a few lbs when she got diarrhea and when she gained them all again and a few more in just days! And these things are priceless.
Life without a yaya isn't for anyone. Some families can't live without one, and they have their own reasons. I'm just very happy that right now, we're good without one. :)