Going Back To Work

About eight weeks ago I went back to work. Like, really went back to work. For the last year or so I knew I was ready. Ella turned ten last Spring. My brain was growing mushy. I would go to volunteer at their school and not want to leave when my shift was over. I craved the community, the peer relationships, the feeling of accomplishment that comes with a real job. I was ready.

So I started looking. And thinking about what I wanted to do. And then I started really looking and all of the cards fell into place - as they do sometimes. So back at the end of August I started as a Teaching Assistant at a smallish private school in our neighborhood. I had originally looked for a part time position but instead jumped with both feet and not only took a full time position but also decided to move our kids there with me. The idea of managing two different school schedules while also handling The Dad's travel schedule was daunting. It all worked out...

In some ways it has been a huge adjustment. In some ways it has been a natural transition. In most ways it seems to have been a good move for all of us. It's funny, though...  I used to lament that folks here in Philly only knew me as 'Ella and Ollie's mom'. They never new me as the Child Life Specialist that I was in the Twin Cities. They never knew the me that spent her days with sick kids and their families, sharing resources, experience, and a little expertise to make their time there a little bit easier. And I went with that. And I told myself that that person was still in here, even if the people around me never knew she existed.

Today, on the porch of school at dismissal time, Ollie came and sat on my lap. Another teacher walked by and did a bit of a double take. "It's neat," she said, "to see you in your other role." And I laughed to myself -  that being Ella and Ollie's mom has, to some people, become my "other role". I feel grateful - to be where I am right now. And to be able to show different sides of myself to people. As exhausting as it is sometimes to be both Teacher and Mom simultaneously.

1 comment:

  1. I am super excited that my family met your family. I also totally get what you're talking about. We are all of us so externally defined by our jobs, whether that's being at home with our kids or working outside the home. It would be so much easier on us and more interesting for others if we were defined based on what we love rather than what we do.