Well, this is it. Tonight is it. It is the final hour of my stint as a Super Awesome Stay At Home Mom. Everyone keeps asking me, "How do you feel?" It's a question with fifty meanings of course, because I'm eight months pregnant and it's hot out and tomorrow I'm leaving my children and returning to work after two years of not working. Not that being home with Joey and Noah hasn't been work. It's just that doing something you love every day, and wearing whatever you want when you do it, and having a bathroom at your immediate disposal, doesn't feel as much like work as...well, work.
I am excited. It's an adventure to go back and have a room filled with faces who are waiting to hear me speak. I'm not their mother, so listening to me isn't being nagged as much as it's about getting good grades and establishing a positive reputation. They laugh at all my jokes. Middle schoolers think I'm really funny. I do know basing my self-worth on the opinion of a seventh grader isn't ideal, but there are days where it really makes a positive difference in my life. I love when people laugh at my jokes, and it's a very small, select circle of people who do. Middle schoolers just happen to fall into that circle.
I'm also excited to read poetry and write essays and talk about the crafts of reading and writing. I love when students walk into my classroom for the first time, a place I like to call "Bielecki Land" (which comes complete with its own queen--ME--and laws I can make up as I go). Their faces are so expectant and open. They have no idea what I'll be like (I'm told I'm very loud) or what they'll learn, and even the very worst ones have a light, an optimistic spark, on the first day.
It's just that in my heart, I can't stop repeating an old favorite movie quote again and again: "Well, I'm gonna get out of bed every morning...breathe in and out all day long. Then, after a while I won't have to remind myself to get out of bed every morning and breathe in and out...and, then after a while, I won't have to think about how I had it great and perfect for a while." (It's from Sleepless in Seattle. A little melodramatic, but par for the course if you know me).
What I remind myself of is this: No matter how hard it is to go back to work--and this is the really important part--it's temporary. Temporary is a concept I struggle with. When Joey was born and went through his colicky phase, everyone kept promising me, "It's only temporary," and I felt like punching them all in the face. "Temporary?" I wanted to scream. "Screw you! He screams for hours for no reason!" But what I've learned is...everything is temporary. Life is all ups and downs and lots of changes. Even the things that last manage to evolve so much over time that at the end of a journey, you can't believe what it was when it began.
So I'm telling myself: If I can do this thing, a thing that in great scope of life is small and quick, if I can get through it, it will be that much sooner that I hold my brand new baby boy in my arms. I will introduce him to his brothers and cuddle him for those amazing first few weeks. I will get this incredible chance that I didn't think I would have again. And that will be temporary, too, but if there is anything I have learned in being a Super Amazing Stay At Home Mom, it's that loving and raising a child is the most super amazing thing I'll ever get to do.
Here's to new beginnings.