Note: In a perfect world, I would've had this posted last week on World Teachers' Day or the week prior which marked my one month anniversary as a full time teacher. Unfortunately, this isn't a perfect world, and I don't have as many hands as Ganesha.
With that being said, the balancing act is real these days. There's always a lot to be done, and there's no way Beyoncé and I have the same 24 hours. When the mom guilt that comes with returning to work/putting your child in someone else's care first started creeping in - a sister friend sent me a really encouraging note. Within that note was a quote from Lisa Price.
"Some days I'm an incredible mom and a sucky businesswoman. Some days I'm a great businesswoman and a terrible wife. Some days I'm perfect in all roles at home and barely available at work or for friends. I'll never be able to evenly divide my attention to my hats. I'll never be perfect, but everyday I'm good at something, and I have to look for that."
Shoutout to having a tribe that gets you, because that is legitimate gospel in these parts. I am not (yet) excelling at all the tasks this current part of my life requires. My husband is holding it down in ample ways on the home front. (Sidenote: Single mothers deserve roses, massages, cooked meals, and daily thanks, because - even with help - this is hard!) I don't know how I'd get things done without his help.
Aside from the struggles that come with it, I love my job. I love my students. They're tenth graders, so they still act like children and make me earn it. Nonetheless, I love them. Building relationships is my jam, and this job places a handful of hearts and brilliant minds at my feet. It's interesting to be a teacher: a parent to many when I'm not parenting at home (one of my students saw me today and said, "There's my momma.")
I try to be intentional about recognizing that just as things happen in my life that affect my performance as their teacher, things are happening in my student's lives that directly affect their behavior in my classroom. Lord, the patience that requires. The stories they share. The pep talks and the hugs we exchange. I'm blessed to say that a few of my students have had some pretty frank conversations with me. They've yet to learn that I'm a crier, so I suppose I'm doing good at keeping my game face on when they share their troubles. Never mind the ones who share troubles that aren't troubles at all and actually have me laughing on the inside.
I've yet to figure out a tangible way of saying, "None of this will matter in 4 years. Maybe even 2." Because when I was a high school student, you couldn't pay me to believe that the things in my world weren't permanent and pressing. If anyone's got the inside guide on how to break down the reality of life for juvenile minds, bless my comments section.
If you've figured out how to get your toddler over separation anxiety, I'd forever sing your praises, and you should definitely be all up in my comments. During Zora's parent/teacher conference today (Yes, 2 year olds have them. Who knew?), her teacher said she seems independent yet intentional about not doing things without help. Apparently, Zora would rather fuss to get someone's attention and often asks for Chris and me. Y'all should've seen me trying not to cry. I feel terrible about the time we spend apart, and Chris already pointed out that she's crankier when I get home as means of getting my attention. Mind you, I'm constantly saying, "Zora, you don't have to cry for cuddles. We can cuddle anyway."
I'm pretty sure this is turning into a pointless rant, so I'll spare y'all. Just know I'm adulting. And that involves teaching. And mothering. And wife'ing. On my best days, not in that order. While I'm ending this rant, you all should also know that I openly reject the term "working mother," because it implies that women who stay at home with their children aren't working. The only person who would say something that ignorant either doesn't have children or exemplifies child neglect, because parenting is ALWAYS work. Hence, you won't hear me reference myself as a working mother. I've been that since Zora existed, and the term is redundant. What you will hear me say is things are in a flux over here. I am not deterred, but I am surely figuring things out. Stay tuned for how well being a Libra contributes to finding my balance, and continue praying that the odds be in my favor.