Back to the Grind

On my way back to the grind...
I’m sure there are things that would have made my return to work easier.

If baby Gabe wasn’t so perfect, his lashes, his coos, his snuggles beneath my chin. That would have made it easier.

If my school wasn’t quite so awful, was cleaner. If my classroom hadn’t been thrashed by the traffic of the one hundred fifty-odd students who traipse in and out everyday. That would have made it easier.

If I had an easy, clean, private space to pump and rinse the bottles and cones with water that wasn’t labeled undrinkable and a refrigerator to store expressed milk until the end of the day. That would have made it easier.

If my schedule wasn’t dictated by the ring of a bell. If I could pump and pee when I needed to instead of depending on the bell schedule or the field trip or the testing schedule on any particular day. That would have made it easier.

If it wasn’t that time of year. Instead of teaching, I am a test proctor, a computer re-starter, a warning bell that your time is almost up. If I was teaching sonnets and slant rhymes, black out poetry and onomatopoeia, instead of watching students tip tap click clack on keyboards and staring at screens. That would have made it easier.

But Gabe is lovely, and so is Kiara. I have amazing help from David. My students are brilliant poets and many of my colleagues are supportive. That makes it just a little bit easier.

So even though it’s hard, even though it’s not easy, I know it could be so much harder. Women are doing everything, everywhere, everyday. Or maybe are staying home facing all of those unique challenges. All I know is that motherhood has taught me what so many have known: this is the hard work of life. 


  1. Life is definitely a grind. Keep up the wisdom and perspective!

    1. Thanks for reading, Sonya, and putting in the work!