It's weird, knowing summer is ending, and everyone else is going back to school. All my teacher friends on Facebook are posting about setting up their classrooms, endless meetings, new expectations, and getting ready for the students to come.
I think I'm jealous.
I feel like I'm in limbo. I am choosing to stay home with my babies, but feel like I need to be doing something more for some reason. I keep trying to remind myself of how stressed I would be right now if I was going back to work. How I would be getting overwhelmed with meetings and setting things up for the students. How the first few days are the toughest because they set the tone for the rest of the year. How my babies at home would be pushed aside as my priorities were rearranged.
Then I have flashbacks of the best classes I ever had from this past year. How amazing those kids were, how driven and sweet and just plain FUN. I miss them. Maybe because I didn't close out the school year with them, my unrealistic subconscious tells me if I go back it will still be the same. That the same students will be there and all will be as it was.
But then I go out somewhere and see defiant children backtalking and bullying and being punks. And I remember the students who were challenging, who made me think about different ways to reach them, who made me preoccupied when I was home and should have been focusing on my own children.
I try to recall the meetings. The endless, endless meetings where you are told to rearrange things a certain way, fix the way you are doing things, change this, change that, but come to another meeting so people can just babble on and on about nothing when you could actually be in the classroom getting ready for the students.
But I miss the camaraderie. The joking with the other teachers, the commiserating, the collaborating over lessons and students.
Am I going to stay home forever? No. I think I would shrivel up and become empty if I didn't have more to do. I think I need to find a project, just for me, something to do where I can challenge myself, but also take my children since I can't afford daycare anymore. Preferably something that can make extra income. That would be nice.
In the meantime, good luck to all the teachers pouring their hearts into their classrooms right now. To those memorizing class lists and critiquing lesson plans and designing bulletin boards and attending meetings and changing curriculum and speaking to parents and collaborating with coworkers and spending hours thinking and planning and prepping to make connections. Thank you for all you do. I know it's a lot.