Monday, July 13, 2009

American Literature, Procrastination, and Two Sweet Boys

After nine years of full time stay at home motherhood, I'm headed back to work in September. I'll be teaching high school English. Ever since I began sending out my resume last spring, I've been plagued by guilt and fear. I'm working through the guilt as I also felt guilt about not bringing home some bacon or providing my children with a working mother role model. Darned if you do darned if you don't. The fear, actually more of a bad case of nerves, is still affecting me. So many people have told me that the teaching profession is sooo different now and, worse, that teenagers are sooo different. Can they really be so changed in a decade and what is the cause? Texting? Harry Potter? Twilight? Ipods? So I've been trying to prepare myself. I've been all over educational websites and blogs. I've picked up the textbooks I'll be using. I should be reading this

and this,
but at the end of very long summer days of making pancake breakfasts (that's preemptive guilt trying to make up for the PopTart breakfasts headed our way), packing picnic lunches, driving the kids to the lake for swim practice, swim meets, and general fun in the sun, applying and reapplying sunscreen, washing the swimsuits, towels, and cooler, making dinner, taking walks and/or evening bike rides, squeezing in some doctor visits or library trips here and there, and scrubbing the bathtub of all the sand that falls off my kids' bodies (seriously, you could build a castle in it most summer nights), when I finally fall into the bed with a book, I fall asleep on top of it. That is getting me worried. I must reacquaint myself with Hester Prynne and Captain Ahab.
This evening as soon as I sat down with the books and hi lighter pens, my sons asked me to take them for a bike ride. Apparently it wasn't fair that their sister had a sleepover to attend and they didn't. I loaded the minivan with their bikes and drove to a local park. I don't think I was overly cheerful about it and as I watched them bike around the park, I berated myself for being snippy with them and then berated myself for not being firmer and just reading those books, when my six year old biked over to me with a Bic pen he found in the parking lot "to use when you do your schoolwork" followed by my ten year old clutching a fistful of daisies for me. Is it odd that I cried? Or that I'm a little choked up typing this hours later? I'm thinking we're in for a bumpy ride come September.

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