I still remember the moment clearly, a memory etched in my mind forever. Summer had just begun, and was off to a reasonable start. It was the beginning of July and I had just found out that I was pregnant. I was thrilled, elated, and could NOT wait to be a mother. It was my life goal. Then I remembered I was a teacher, which was OK, because that was my life’s dream. I could, and would be both. In that instant, in the middle of a hot July summer, with school a distant memory, I became a working mom.
The baby was scheduled to arrive at the beginning of April. Test-prep would be just about done. My students would be well adjusted to procedures (let’s hope, because it would be April). I had plenty of time to find a maternity sub and write plans (writing maternity sub plans is the worst…there is no sugar coating that one). I was only a few weeks pregnant, the school year hadn’t even begun, and I was already fretting about April. I was a working mother in the making.
Staying until 6 p.m. at the school each night wasn’t going to work out anymore. I thought to be a good teacher, you were the first to arrive and the last to leave. Turns out, you can be a great teacher, a fabulous mom, and still leave work at a decent hour. It was all about being prepared. So, the months sped on. I was terrified. Then I was excited. Then I was scared. Always, I was tired. It was a vicious cycle that lasted 9 months. Well, 10, but let’s pretend that being pregnant for 40 weeks is 9 months, because that is what everyone tells us. Who came up with that math? Not a teacher, obviously.
Finally the day arrived, early of course. But I was prepared. My plans were written, my sub ready to go. The moment was beautiful. Our son entered the world and my life changed. I was still a teacher, but now a mother too.