When a Teacher Doesn’t Go Back to School

It’s the morning following Labour Day weekend, and I’ve spent the last 20 minutes perusing Facebook, adoringly spammed with back to school photos of littles and their backpacks, and colleagues and their bulletin boards.

I’m trying to sort out my feelings about all of this.

For the first time in TWENTY-THREE years, I didn’t buy ANY back to school notebooks. I didn’t think about what the year ahead might look like. Or get the annual back-to-school haircut. I won’t be getting any new textbooks. I won’t meet any new classmates or colleagues. Or have anything to do with report cards.

I have a load of laundry in the machine. There are still spatters of a scrambled egg breakfast on the floor beneath the high chair. My hair is washed, but I’m still in sweatpants. I woke up the same time this morning as yesterday, and the day before.

This year looks so very, very different.

I miss the back to school shopping. The buzz of a classroom on the first day. The tangent of conversations that cover every seemingly unimportant aspect of the summer. And the excitement of starting new, of buckling down, and striving for new goals.

But my baby girl is sleeping in her crib, snuggled up with her pink bunny. It’s been an early morning of slobbery kisses and a stroll around the farm in my pyjamas.  And next week, I get to celebrate my mom’s September birthday in person for the first time since I left home.

Yes, this year looks so very, very different.

But I’m at peace with that, in the best way possible… and I wouldn’t change a thing.

You see, I’ve still got the half finished cup of coffee sitting beside me. I can still only really plan one day at a time, though I try to use an agenda at the start of every week. I’m constantly making goals, and cramming in time to finish them before deadlines. I’m making lunches that I hardly give myself time to eat, and I’ve got a dozen notebooks waiting to be filled with scribbles by the end of June. I’ve met so many new friends in the past few months, and I’m so excited to get to know them more in the coming season.

And I am still learning so many things. So many, many things.

It’s just that this September, I’m in a different kind of classroom. And I can’t wait to see what will happen.

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