Ohio host family and their British au pair, Jodie, remain true family years later.
When she first became an au pair with Au Pair in America, Jodie had no idea just how much her host family would impact her life. Three years later, she reflects on how she considers them her true family – and how their relationship only continues to grow as the years go by (despite living thousands of miles away). Jodie shares her story below:
I was an au pair in Cincinnati, Ohio from July 2014 to July 2015. I was paired with a family who had a 6-year-old girl and twin boys aged 9. I remember the first time meeting them at the airport and I was so nervous, I was worried how I would fit into their lifestyle and their culture and if the kids would even like me, and how they would behave with me when the parents were around.
My worries were quickly over, though. The family was so welcoming and warming, with the girl running to me and giving me the biggest hug ever when I met her for the first time! The boys took a couple of days to get used to me, but after they grew comfortable with me, everything was absolutely fine.
Over the course of the year with them, I honestly grew to love them like they really were my own family. They took me on vacation with them to West Virginia, and when I went on my own trips away, they were able to work their schedules around so that I could take the days off that I needed, and they recommended places to go in different cities I went.
They would make sure that on my days off I could have time off to spend with friends, but if I was in the house they would invite me to spend the time with them, going grocery shopping or to the kids’ soccer matches. They never made me feel obliged to go, but they would always make me feel included.
They also were so incredibly generous when it came to holidays, particularly Easter and Christmas. On Easter they gave me an Easter basket full of English chocolate, which I thought was so incredibly thoughtful, and on Christmas they had a stocking made with my name on it (which I still have now!) as well as some lovely and thoughtful presents.
when your old host mum from 4 years ago is still basically a second mum and wants to travel from the US to the UK to come to your uni graduation😭❤️ forever grateful to @aupairinamerica for putting me in touch with the most incredible family ❤️ pic.twitter.com/fRrlY16QEH
— jodie✨ (@jodiesuzanne_) March 21, 2019
I can’t even begin to express how lucky I was to find this family, they really were my perfect match. What is crazy is that I almost didn’t pair with them – there was another family interested in me that I couldn’t choose between them, and when the other family decided to go with another au pair, that’s when I decided to match with the Cincinnati family, and it was the best decision I ever made!
Fast forward to the end of my year, leaving them was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. By the end of the year, they really were – and still are – family.
I’m so lucky to have kept in great contact with them. We send each other Christmas cards every year, I send the kids birthday cards and we email often. I’ve been back to visit twice. The summer after I left, I went to visit my friend in Canada (another au pair) and then went back to the states to surprise the kids and spent a couple of weeks with them. Then, just this past summer they invited me back to spend the summer with them and were even kind enough to pay for my flight back over!
Since I returned back in the UK, I have had jobs where my host mom has given me amazing references, and she really encouraged and supported my decision to go to university and has really been there for me, supporting me every step of the way. So much so, that she and my host dad are hoping to fly over to the U.K. for my university graduation in the summer (see tweet above). Even if they don’t manage to make it over, just the fact they want to be there to support me means the absolute world.
I honestly can’t begin to explain how grateful I am to Au Pair in America for not only giving me an amazing experience, but for introducing me to the most incredible family – who is now my family.
Gain an international family member like Jodie – consider hosting an au pair! Learn about hosting with Au Pair in America today.