As I lay here in bed on the Sunday night of Spring Break, the weight of everything I didn't do and need to do is suffocating. Why do I have so much to do? Do all teachers feel this way on Sunday night? Am I expecting too much of myself? Of my students? What is that balance between trying to challenge and grow as learners and feeling like this?
For now, I have no choice but to make compromises. And that's okay. It has to be.
I won't be the best teacher tomorrow - and that's hard to admit. But, my students have taught me more about grace than I ever knew possible. When I am honest with them tomorrow about not being prepared, they will understand. They will cut me the slack I am so unwilling to cut myself. And they will see me as an ordinary person who sometimes struggles, but is persistent. And that's a lesson in itself.
My entire goal was to get a cute picture of her smiling and showing "Daddy's Lucky Girl" on her shirt. Apparently, my years of professional photography experience did not prepare me to capture images of my own child.
While this one is good, it's not her smile. It's just another in a series of silly faces. But those eyes!
All of this occurred over the course of about sixty seconds. And, as it turns out, I love the entire photo series.
Many times in the past years, I would race home from work to meet my friends out for happy hour and try to catch up since they had already been drinking for six hours. We would create memories, meet randoms, and enjoy shenanigans all night. The next morning, we would relive and recall it all through brunch.
This year, we traded out green beer for ice cream.
After hitting a huge consignment sale at the fairgrounds, we stopped at the Dairy Zone for a treat, effectively ruining our dinner. My Cake Batter Tornado was totally worth it.
Signing "please" for more = a huge success!
This was the taste of summer I wanted during Spring Break. It was a perfect afternoon with a crisp 67 degrees.
The papers I have barely touched really need feedback and grades. The books I need to read instead of want to read are demanding my attention. The rough sketched out lesson plans for next week are begging to be finalized. The load of laundry I purposefully avoided last week because it was all work clothes must get cleaned.
I can only deny it for so long.
No longer will I get my long, slow morning with my coffee and Scandal reruns waiting to hear Mila's sweet voice stir awake upstairs.
When you are trying to get pregnant, each month you are not is a little grieving process.
All month, your mind is consumed with thoughts about what if this is the month.
Am I pregnant? Is that why I feel so bloated? What was that pain? Is it cramps? Ovulation pain? Is it another miscarriage? Should I take a test now? Should I have a glass of wine?
Will I have trouble keeping this pregnancy, too? When do I need to go on progesterone? Should I start taking the baby aspirin now? Will this baby be healthy?
When would I be due? What would that date mean for work? How will that impact us financially? How much time will I need to take unpaid? How long will my sick time last?
How far apart will the kids be? When would I need to move Mila to the other bedroom? How will she handle the move?
Each question and thought is filled with fear and excitement.
When you realize you are not this month, a crushing feeling envelopes your soul. I sound like I'm exaggerating here, but I'm not. The life you thought about, dreamed about, planned for with the baby born that month is no longer your life.
Then, the cycle begins again.
I know it will happen when it's supposed to - but someone try telling my heart that.
I used to think my mother was crazy for never sleeping in. Why on earth would she want to get out of a nice, warm comfy bed with soft, fluffy pillows? I'd hit snooze as often as I could before I had to get up. Many times in my teens and young twenties I would sleep past noon.
Now, I realize she is a GENIUS.
5 AM is quickly becoming my favorite time of the day. Me time.
The house sleeps perfectly quite and still. Just the breath of my loves upstairs fast asleep. I'm extra careful not to wake anyone. For their sanity, and mine.
It's a time for me to be me. Not Mom. Not a wife. Not a teacher.
I don't forget about these roles. In fact, many things happen at this hour to make me better in each of these titles.
But, it is an hour, a time, completely devoted to what I need at the exact moment. Maybe it's a run. Maybe time to write. Maybe catch up on a book. Maybe it's time to just sit and enjoy my coffee.
No matter how I spend the time, it's not wasted. All of these activities prepare me for my day mentally, physically, and emotionally.