Scary Day Eve

What do these things have in common:

  • my astronomy final
  • my first day of teaching solo
  • tomorrow morning

Answer? Things I’m Not Ready For.

Today, Sunday, is the last day of my Working Mom’s maternity leave, which at nearly three months was generous by U.S. standards but I must be channelling my inner European because a couple of years off is looking pretty good right now.

Tomorrow I go back to my full time gig, which now will mean taking care of a newborn, a three-year old, and a house, and since it’s in that order I think I can expect some tantrums from the three-year old. And the house. 

Unlike that astronomy final, I actually care about the result here. (I was only taking the class to impress my then-girlfriend, anyway. She’s now an Ivy League astrophysics professor, so it’s doubtful that I ever impressed her.)

And unlike that first class I ever taught, my performance tomorrow will actually have an impact on these kids, for good or for naught. (To be fair, I guess tomorrow on its own could suck and things would still work out OK.)   

And, of course, I can only talk about it a very little at home. The center of sympathy’s gravity belongs to my wife, who, because of my career choice, must slog tomorrow to an often delicate and frustrating workplace. When I do share how hard my job is, let alone touch on my feelings of isolation, I am never too far from the realization that Working Mom would be thrilled to switch places, to experience the joys and trials of domestic life.

So mostly I try to not talk about it. That, after all, is what the blog is for, right?

Wish me luck — the roller coaster is about to start.