Unless you are a teacher - or married to one - you might not know that we have to pack up our rooms at the end of every school year. We can't just leave all the desks in their locations, the pencils on the counters, and the books on the shelves. We have to put things in bins or cabinets. We have to stack the desks and chairs. Everything is tucked away and secured. This is so the custodians can use the summer to deep clean the classrooms. This is what I have to go do today - and I probably couldn't want to do anything less.
Wednesday was the last day for students. Thursday was the teachers' last day. For that exact reason, I told my principal I would be in on Friday. Not that I don't want to see anyone - but I don't want to see anyone.
Going back to school stresses me out. I have actually had several nightmares about going back. In them, I am surrounded by sad eyes and condolences, and when I try to get up and teach, I can't because I am so overwhelmed. My school family surrounded me with love when Kenley died. They sent cards and food. They sent money to help with our expenses. Some people stopped by to see how we were. They are all wonderful, wonderful people, but I'm not ready. I'm not ready to be back there and see everyone all at once. Hopefully, today, the halls will be mostly empty. Only a few people might still be there finishing up their rooms.
Besides my own home, school is where I spent a majority of my pregnancy. I walked those halls from the very first day of school with Kenley in my belly. As time went on, I waddled them. From day one, I was pregnant. From the beginning of August till the end of February, Kenley and I went to school every day together. Today is my first day going without her. And I am scared. I am scared I will walk into my classroom - the room I left that fateful day thinking I'd be back the next - and just lose it. I am scared everything I have to organize and sort and put away will bring back memories of my students, to whom I never got to say goodbye. I am scared that it will all be too overwhelming and I will just fall apart in the middle of the room, surrounded by piles of things I haven't seen in three months.
I don't want to go. I want it to just magically organize and pack itself. I'm just not ready. But, it has to be done. And I am a grown up, and I do what I am supposed to do. So, here goes nothing.