Back To....

It's the season for back to school, back to work, back to the normal order of things. Summer has such a laid back, easy feel, but fall is the opposite. Fall means the return of early wake ups, stricter bed times, and more structured days. Fall for me also means going back to work, something that gets harder every year. (Hello crying in the car on the way again.) I could talk about the low pay of teachers, the disrespect from students, the bullying from parents, or how little the government thinks of my job, but the hardest part for me is coming back to school to be with other people's kids all day long and not being around my own. Let me be clear- I love my job. There are lots of parents I love and coworkers I enjoy being around, but I miss my kids. The wave of jealousy for moms who get to stay home and enjoy their kids is real. Even worse, when I see parents who are joking "thank God school is coming, I get to get rid of my kids!" on social media I want to scream. I have typed the same response over and over to these moms... don't they know how lucky they are to be able to afford to stay home? Don't they get how much other moms wish they could? Sure, we could budget I suppose. We could go down to one car, which means I wouldn't have a way to take my kids places. We could never go anywhere, never go out to eat, sit at home.... but then what's the point of being off? I don't mean to sound whiny. Our jobs have given us the ability to travel, to take our boys places, to attend the shows we go to and do the things we want. But as summer winds down and fall starts every year I have a pang of the same feeling. The post baby hormones multiply the ripples of it into tsunami sized waves that come crashing down as I make plans for my sweet babies to spend the days with someone else. What if they like them more than me? What if I don't know them as well as they do? After all, I always tell my students, we spend more waking hours together in the classroom than they do outside of it. These feelings are real, powerful, and sometimes crushing.
I have to remind myself how lucky I am. Lucky to be at a school where my coworkers can laugh and joke. Lucky to have some parents who truly appreciate the sacrifices their kid's teacher makes. Lucky to have family to help watch the baby and a school I trust for RT. Lucky to be able to spend a little time with them each night and morning. Lucky to have weekends with them. And more and more, every time, lucky to have summer with them. Here's to the craziness of fall and all the changes it brings!

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