It’s my first official day as a stay-at-home mom and Amelia is screaming in her crib. She’s of the opinion that her fifteen-minute catnap home from Wal-mart was good enough.
I am not.
And since I’m determined that this part of our day, the beautiful, (usually) quiet, naptime part is going to be my time of reflection and writing, I’m refusing to get her. She’s really mad. I think she can hear me typing.
So, I’m writing this to the music of her wails and the header from A Holy Experience because I need at least one calming influence.
Except I just caved and good thing. The wail changed. Moms know. Now it’s not just an “I’m so mad I can’t stand myself” cry, but the one that makes you realize something might really be wrong. Her leg was stuck in the crib bars. So, I’ve rescued her and now she’s trying to make phone calls. She’s really irresistible, this bundle of curls and sticky, tears still on her cheeks.
It’s our first day home alone since she was eight weeks old. I’m not sure what to do with her. Or myself. The big girls are off to school, and while that prompted a whole different flood of emotions for so many different reasons, it is done. They’re both at the school where Madelynne started kindergarten and sometimes they’ll hop that yellow bus over to my old stomping grounds and I’ll be there waiting just like last year.
Truthfully, the hardest part of back to school has been not going myself. I feel awkward, out of place, a little disjointed. But I tell people I’m fine.
I asked Joshua, “What if I gave up the only thing I’m really good at?”
To which he promptly reminded me of all my other gifts and dreams and the realities of what I’ve already committed to because obviously others don’t think that.
But the truth is I’m scared sometimes. Of how we’ll make it. Of what I’ll become. Of who I want to be.
Teaching was my safety net. I was secure. I was liked (mostly). I was comfortable. Now when people ask me what I do, I always feel the need to justify myself.
“I taught at North until now. Just taking some time off to be a mom.” Like I have to apologize for wanting to do what’s best for our family, what’s best for me.
Because I couldn’t do it all and trying was killing me.
So what I mean is, I’m a mom. And that’s okay. But the person who became this mother, she’s still becoming more than just that. And that’s okay, too.
Because now I have the time to try something new. And I’m not fine.