Today was our first day back to work. For about a week now everyone has been asking me if I was ready, and I was sticking to the positive. I was believing that words and attitudes have power and that half the battle of being ready was saying that I was ready. Besides, I've been off for 4 months now, it's time to go back.
When I got to school, though, I felt a little bombarded with the tasks of a new school year. The rearranging, the planning, the deadlines, the test scores. And probably what overwhelmed me the most was leaving Catherine at daycare for the first time. I started out okay because I had psyched myself up for it. I didn't even cry when I dropped her off. I did okay through half a day of meetings, and then I went to visit at lunch. By the time I was back at work, looking at last year's TAKS scores on an overhead projector, I was shaky. By the time I picked her up, I had tears in my eyes just to be back with her again.
It was like someone tore my heart out and gave it to someone else to watch over. I guess maybe you can function without it for a little while but it eventually gets to you. For me, it wasn't an explosive, tearful moment; it was a slow ache.
Ok, I'll stop with the weepiness now. It's just that people warn you about these hard things about being a parent, and there's just no way to prepare for it or know what is going to be like until you do it. The silly thing was that I knew she would be ok. The babysitter is a sweetheart, and I can tell that she loves all of the kids that stay with her. She's been super supportive of me, and even called me to make sure I was doing alright. I guess I'm just jealous of her. She gets to spend all day with my awesome baby. I think I may have to have a talk with her... just to let her know that she's the one who should be paying me to hang out with Cate.