Recently, I have been chasing away a feeling of dread that been creeping, like a shadow, in the back of my mind. My summer is rapidly coming to an end, and for me that means returning to work. Now, before you make any rash judgements about teachers and summer breaks, first understand that my reluctance to go back to work has never been this profound. I love my job, and I normally (deep down) look forward to going back. I love building relationships with my new students, creating new and engaging lessons, and setting up my room to be as inviting as possible. However, this year, I am not feeling the same level of excitement.
As I have been self reflecting, and working to find what has been causing the shift in attitude, I have discovered two things:
First, I have loved spending every waking moment with my beautiful 18 month old daughter. She is the most incredible human being I have ever known! She has become so animated and her personality has really developed over the past few months. Last summer she was still really tiny, and wasn’t as active. Now, we play and go on adventures, and laugh together all day, and it breaks my heart that I will have to leave her to go back to work. A part of me wishes I was a stay at home mom and I could continue our adventures together. That is not possible for our situation, but it is still something I wish I could do. At least until she goes to school.
The second reason seems to be a little more complex and subconscious. It has been floating around in my mind, but every time I think I have a grasp on it, it disappears. So, I have been struggling to identify it. However, tonight I was laying under the star-filled sky, listening to the sounds of the night, when I found myself relishing in nostalgia. Growing up, I spent so many nights outside. Those summer nights as a young woman allowed for endless opportunities of unexperienced adventure. Those times in my life were reckless and wild. The summer meant I could do anything or go anywhere. I felt free and audacious.
Now, this is going to sound awful, but it seems to be my subconscious truth. I feel that I am experiencing a sort of grieving for the way my summers use to be. Now that I am a mother, I cannot be reckless or wild. The whims that I use to follow before are now something I have to suppress, because my daughter is my number one priority. Obviously, I cannot take her skydiving, or anything else crazy. I’m not sure what to make of this feeling, but I feel like I want to be honest with myself and admit I have been feeling this way. I do miss being able to be spontaneous.
I also believe that I have been experiencing dread about going back to work because now that summer is almost over, the possibility (no matter how small) of being able to do something spontaneous, and a little reckless, is getting smaller. I know once I get back into the same old routine, there won’t be time, or energy, to have these possible adventures. The daily grind and immense stress of my job will slowly once again begin to crush me down. My wanderlust and appetite for spontaneity will be gone! That thought alone gives me so much anxiety. I love the way summer allows me to reconnect with family as well as myself. I feel like a human again.
I don’t know if any of this even makes any sense…
I feel like I am loosing that spur of the moment, leap before I think, part of my life. I know, and fully understand and accept, that it comes along with being a parent. I signed up for it. I wanted, and continue to want, to be a mother. I wouldn’t change anything. And I regret nothing. I just deeply miss being spontaneous. My heart just longs to feel, just for a moment, the thrill of the unexpected rush of passion! The excitement of letting go of responsibly and loosing myself in the moment. I want dance in the middle of the desert under the stars. skinny dip in the river. Cruise in the car, windows down with the radio blaring, and no place special to go. Just for a moment. Feel that inexplicable feeling of being completely and utterly uninhibited.
These feelings have been swelling up inside of my mind, and it feels good being able to get them out. I never knew that becoming a mom would come with so many different emotions, and force to me analyze my patterns of thought and grow into a better woman. I know these thoughts must be natural, but they have surprised me.
Thank you for letting me vent. I truly appreciate you guys for allowing to me to express myself so openly. It means a lot!