As the plane touched down on the tarmac, she let out a sigh of relief. After hours of grueling worry and panic, she could finally switch her phone back on. The beep of a new message sounded, and a small preview of an image flashed onto the screen.
She was relieved to have received the message, so she didn’t think much of it at first. But then she glanced again and the sight she saw had her motherly instincts kicking into overdrive. She wanted to get back home, no matter the cost.
Anyone with children knows how important it is to find the right babysitter – someone capable and can be trusted. Parents also know the stress of last-minute plans popping up or falling through and all go-to sitters being unavailable.
It is usually a teeth-grinding time, which no one, parent or not, likes. For single mom Claudia Sorhaindo, it finally happened.
It started with a job promotion. It was an unbelievable opportunity not only for her but for a better future she could give her daughter, Ava.
Claudia looked forward to the new responsibilities. But she didn’t know that they would be starting sooner than expected. The phone rang, and the news put her into a panic.
A single parent, she would have to fly out for an entire weekend and leave her baby girl home alone-which she had never done before.
The first calls went out to the usual babysitters. However, luck was not on her side, as all of them were busy. The same happened with any family members Claudia trusted. Her phone beeped again.
It was her sister. “J’Ann says she can do it.” Claudia frowned at the phone. Her niece was only 15 years old, with select habits that Claudia wasn’t a fan of.
The young girl might have been an option for an evening, but the idea of anything longer than that put a cold pit in the mom’s stomach. She glanced at her itinerary. Did she really have a choice?
The family understood the overprotectiveness this mom felt. After all, she had lost her 3-month-old, Jenelle, due to a medication mix-up at the hospital.
They had been the darkest days of her life. J’Ann wasn’t her number one choice, but her sister promised that things would be okay. Her precious little girl would be in good hands.
“Alright,” she said and ran to pack – all the while holding her daughter close and already missing her terribly. The next day her niece arrived looking bright and excited.
She kissed her aunt, then squealed and hugged the baby. They weren’t even on the to-do list yet, and the girl already had her phone out and was snapping photos.
“Let’s start with feeding,” Claudia said, taking the phone away and setting it on the table. She went through the long list of instructions and emergency phone numbers.
The girl listened with a large smile. “Don’t worry. I’ll give you lots of updates.” Claudia had no idea that one of those updates would terrify her to her core.
There was no more stalling. Claudia kissed little Ava on the cheek and tried to hold back the tears. She hadn’t been away from her baby girl like this before, and it already hurt.
Through the taxi ride to waiting in the lounge, she texted dozens of messages to her niece, who kept her in the loop about what was happening. Well, that was until the last message went unanswered.
Claudia held her phone in a white-knuckle grip, hoping to see new updates. She ignored the recording to turn off all devices.
It wasn’t until the flight attendant came directly to her and asked her to switch it off did she press the button. It would only be a few hours. What could possibly happen in that time?
No amount of deep breathing, in-flight entertainment, or positive thinking helped the mom get through the agonizing flight. The worst part was the landing and moving towards the gate so they could get off.
“I’m not waiting anymore,” Claudia thought and turned on her phone. A new message – finally! It was a picture. Claudia squinted at the fuzzy pink mass.
The caption read, “I was making a sandwich,” but it was the photo that sent her into a frantic spin. The tiny thumbnail showed her daughter covered in a pink blanket, but her legs looked deformed and swollen to twice their size.
“What happened?!” Claudia texted back in all caps. She had to force herself to rewrite the message in a normal case. She called J’Ann’s cell. No answer.
Claudia dialed again. Nothing. Her heart beat through her chest, and terrifying images flew through her mind. For a person who was always on her phone, how could her niece not answer her call now?
She was hundreds of miles away and helpless. She could call only one number and pray they got there in time. Claudia hit 911. She frantically gave the details through her tears.
Others on the plane noticed something was happening. Claudia cried. She needed to get off the plane quickly. The passengers parted, and she ran off the plane.
It wasn’t until she reached the security line did she look at her phone again. This time the image was loaded and clear. She slumped against the wall.
“You’ve got to be joking,” she muttered, staring at the truth. There was no deformity and no swelling. There sat Ava, happy and content within J’Ann’s pink stretch pants like a baby kangaroo in a momma’s pouch.
“What’s going on?” Claudia typed. Her mind couldn’t place what she was looking at and what she thought she had seen earlier.
The answer made Claudia turn red with embarrassment. The young girl had wanted to make a sandwich but didn’t want to leave the baby alone even for a second.
She also couldn’t find the baby holster, so she improvised. The photo was just proof to show how the 2-month-old was perfectly safe. The story then took another interesting turn.
Claudia took to social media. “So… I asked my niece to babysit Baby Ava… later, I received a text saying that J’Ann wanted to make a sandwich but didn’t want to let baby Ava out of her sight.
Lord, send help because this was her solution-creativity at its finest.” She detailed her niece’s ingenuity, not knowing the post would explode.
It was shared more than 300,000 times and received just as many likes and comments. People chimed in on how they wished they had thought of that with their own babies.
“Brilliant! I carried my babies around on my hip in the ’70s. I wish I had thought of this!” It also gave J’Ann a potentially lucrative idea.
The new business idea would be called J’Pants. There were even ideas on being able to convert maternity pants for extended use.
Everyone loved the idea, and J’Ann already had a huge supporter – Claudia. The grateful mom went as far as starting a Go Fund Me page so the business idea could get a boost.
Pledges have slowly trickled in. However, regardless of the financial outcome, the family has something more valuable – Claudia has another trusted babysitter, the family is closer than ever, and they have an amusing story to tell for years to come.
But Claudia’s story isn’t the only one of its kind. In Boston, Massachusetts, a similar incident occurred, leaving a poor momma in tears as she helplessly watched what the babysitter was doing to her son.
Marie Jackson was your average single mom living in Boston with the apple of her eye, one-year-old Cameron. Marie loved her son to the moon and back and would do anything for him.
But although she wanted to spend each hour of her day with him, the realities of being a grown-up soon caught up with her.
Marie worked a personal assistant job for a high-profile acquisitions editor in her city. The job was perfect for her as it rarely took her away from her little angel.
Marie had been clocking in at 9 AM and working through the day before leaving at 4 PM. But this changed after she had her baby boy.
With Cameron’s birth came a paid maternity leave for Marie–a period where she could enjoy her time with her son as any mom should.
But as Cameron turned one, Marie knew she needed to return to work or end up with no means of providing for her boy. She had no clue what she was about to step into.
Marie geared up to return to work, finding an affordable nanny for her little angel. With everything set, she showed the nanny her baby’s day-to-day routine, kissed Cameron goodbye, and drove to work.
But she wasn’t even gone for half the morning when her phone beeped. She quickly snagged it off her desk. What she saw shriveled her insides.
While preparing for her dreaded return to work, Marie had gone to extents to ensure she’d know everything Cameron was going through while she was at work.
She’d installed discrete baby cams all over the house, connecting them straight to her cellphone. What those cameras would show her would be too much for her to handle.
It was midmorning when Marie’s phone pinged with a notification. The baby cameras had picked up something she needed to see. But the message came at the worst moment.
Marie was in the middle of a briefing between her boss and a few higher-ups from their agency. The meeting was important, but so was Cameron.
Excusing herself, Marie whispered to her boss that she had an emergency at home. Her boss gave her a quick nod, telling the rest of the attendees that something had come up and her assistant needed to tend to it.
Marie wasn’t even out of the office when she clicked the notification. What she saw beat all air from her lungs.
Marie had always heard about nannies who didn’t treat kids right. She’d watched several news bulletins about such unsavory individuals facing jail time after parents pressed charges.
Would Marie fall under that number? She loved Cameron with everything within her and wouldn’t let a single soul on heaven, hell, or earth harm him. Not knowing what to expect, she logged into the beeping camera.
The feed showed the nanny, Ursula, dressed in bright colors, in the living room with baby Cameron lying on the couch. Music was playing on the tv, and she had laid Cameron’s snacks on the table.
Marie’s heart began thumping as she realized what was happening. Ursula started dancing, and out of nowhere, the unexpected happened.
Cameron giggled where he lay. He came up and started bouncing to the music’s tune, and seeing his reaction, Ursula picked him up.
They began dancing all over the living room, with Cameron laughing in the cutest way possible. Marie had never seen him embody such prolonged joy. She shook and shed tears as she watched, knowing one thing: she’d made the right decision when choosing Ursula.
Disclaimer: To protect the privacy of those depicted, some names, locations, and identifying characteristics have been changed and are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblances to actual events, places, or persons, living or dead, are entirely coincidental.