The Babysitter // My daughter-in-law took a different approach to parenting than I did

As told to Chaya Gross

I was in the middle of doing the seating arrangements for my daughter’s wedding when my daughter-in-law Leah called.

“Hi, Leah,” I said. “It’s a good thing you called. Maybe you can help me out. Do you think your mother would rather sit with my sisters, or should I put her at a table with Dina Green?”

“I don’t think she cares,” Leah replied. “Or how about putting her at a table with Huvi Weiss? They’re good friends.”

I massaged my temples. I had no idea why I’d insisted on doing this. I still had a million other things to do for the wedding and the sheva brachos, which would be taking place in an upstate hotel on Shabbos. 

“Anyway,” Leah continued, “I called you because I’m totally panicking. My babysitter just backed out for the Shabbos sheva brachos. Do you know anyone who could babysit for Tzvi?”

“Oh! I must have been so busy that I forgot to tell you that Riva is bringing her nieces along.” Riva was my oldest daughter, and she had quite a few nieces. “I’m sure they’ll be able to keep an eye on Tzvi.” 

“I heard they’re coming, but I don’t want to take him along. He’s at such a hard stage. I want to be able to enjoy the weekend without him. I had someone who does overnight babysitting, but she just called me to cancel.”

I bit my tongue before I could say something I’d regret.

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