Monday, August 22, 2011

Returning to Work

So...I went back to work today.  All week, and all day yesterday, and especially all of yesterday evening, I labored over what to write.  How could I put into words what I was feeling now that summer vacation - i.e. my time as a stay-at-home mom - was coming to an end.  I just couldn't write about it.  I mean, it stinks.  Well, that's kind of harsh.  But it definitely feels like someone just pulled the drain plug out of the summer vacation swimming pool.

I still don't know what to say about how it feels.  I mean, it just stinks.  And I'm afraid to write this because I fantasize that someday I'll have a million followers on my blog and this post will be read by people I work with or, worse yet, my boss.  I'm afraid that they will think, "Oh, June doesn't like to work here.  She'd rather be home with her kids."  Well, yeah, I'd rather be home with my kids but that doesn't mean that I don't like where I work.  And it definitely doesn't mean that although I love being a mother above all, that I'm not a good teacher.  Because I am a good teacher.  I'm dedicated to my students.

Oh, that must mean you can turn off your mom-mode when you go to work and turn off your work-mode when you get home, you must be thinking.  Well, no.  I think about my kids while I'm at work and sometimes share stories about them with my students.  I'm open and real with those kids I teach and many of them have younger siblings and this is how we relate.  Remember when I said I'm a good teacher?  That's because I'm particularly good at building relationships with my students because I can find stuff to relate to with them.  And, although I generally only think about my children while I'm with my children playing with, mothering, and cuddling with my children, I often think about my students while I'm at home.  Some other mother's troubled child sometimes keeps me awake.  And that's okay because I know my children's teachers will do the same if the occasion were arise.  And if my own children needed my worry, that's okay to because I always have some breathing time in the morning at school to think about who in that building needs my care especially that day.

So instead of writing about how it feels to end my summer vacation with my kids because that part is a little painful, I'll write about what happened.

My Tulip has been waking me up at 6:15 every morning of summer vacation.  Sometimes 6:10.  Sometimes 5:55.  The others follow her soon after.  This morning, I got up at 6:00 and did some yoga, by myself, while my kids slept later than usual.  But Tulip had gotten up to go pee at about 5:50.  She went back in her room.  I could kind of see her playing with her stuffed animals in bed when I peeked in the crack of her bedroom door.  She had stayed in her room and came out later.

It's like she knew.

When Luna woke up, she crawled into my lap and said, "I.  Love.  Mama."  I left for work and hugged and kissed everyone goodbye.  Luna, my baby, wrapped her arms around my neck and hugged me long and tight.  She wasn't clinging.  She was giving me the hug I needed.  She let go and said, "Bye-bye Mama."

It's like she knew.

I missed them terribly all morning at my meetings.  I felt that pang in my chest and that fullness creep into my breasts and I thought, "Well, it must be 1:00.  Luna's getting sleepy and wants some milk."  I checked the clock and it was 1:05.

It's like I knew.  Of course I did.  Because above all, I am a Mama.  And now, again, I get to be a teacher too.

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