|The Obligatory Blog Photo|
Or am receiving, I guess. Friends are still liking this status update. Trust me, my own horn I am not tooting; however, over 98 people responded in the positive in addition to 2 shares and 28 comments of congratulations and proud of you's and even one about lucky students.
So why didn't I feel the same way?
The word 'diagnosis' has four listed definitions: the third and fourth ones ring the truest for me this new year. Just last month, at the end of a year that felt like something between a sucker punch and that kind of blow to the kidneys that only a seasoned thug can deliver, our family was given a diagnosis. Or, as the definition states, a "determining or analysis of the cause or nature of a problem or situation." But it was the doctors, not my husband or myself, who had had any real concerns when it came to our son. We certainly didn't have any problems. (Situations, yes. Like when the Internet craps out and Charlie can't watch his Pete the Cat video - now that is a situation.)
It had popped up at his 18 month check up, nearly 18 months ago, a word that has so many definitions and examples and stories - one that had worried me even when we were trying to conceive because the numbers associated with it were so alarming. But then we switched pediatricians and opted for second opinions. Things seemed okay until one appointment in Greenville led to another and then a few months of occupational, speech, and physical therapy for our son that led to a re-check and then, there it was: the word, with its dark definitions that fed even darker connotations. It came up again.
That was it. The word. The diagnosis. The definition of our lives from here on out. Talk about status update. Talk about changing job descriptions. Talk about the floor falling out from underneath you on the soul level and you still have to save face because its Christmas and it's not about you and you have to do so much and it's not even lunch time yet and don't you have all the answers? Hardest holiday yet. And then there were many lost days and not rinsed out wine glasses, tears and life lived but in the past tense. Resolved in the new year to overcome depression and anxiety and actually doing it to some degree by beginning the process of finding out about insurance and therapy our for son, I was pleasantly surprised by a job offer and an HR orientation and a class section. But then I was reminded of how my stomach has been living in my throat and looking to move into my mouth for the last month and here I am staring at my Facebook page stating that I had "left Job at Stay-at-Home Parent." That was that straw you hear about in reference to some poor, unfortunate camel and his back. Even though my reality had already begun to change around me, I didn't fully begin to process it until I saw it pop up in my Facebook timeline.
Happy and excited about getting back in the classroom I am; happy and excited about leaving the job that the last two years and nine months have been I am not, especially in the still harsh light of that diagnosis and those definitions. Not only am I a worried mom living with depression and anxiety, but I'm an English instructor. Definitions are, for good or ill, kind of my thing.
|The Not-So-Obligatory Second Blog Photo|
And now I've got to leave one job that I thought defined me behind and, despite my inner critic and her not-so-glowing reviews of my ability to re-enter the workforce or remember my comma rules or relate to students who were graduating first grade when I was graduating from my alma mater, re-define words I thought I had defined. Words like 'mom,' 'instructor,' 'special,' needs,' 'hope,' 'student,' 'work,' 'schedule,' and well, 'life.'
I've got some homework to do.
And maybe that's why I'm feeling reticent, you know, reluctant or reserved, about changes to my job description. Because maybe I'm stuck way back at the beginning of this journey still contemplating the other definition of the word, 'diagnosis.' You know, the fourth one that sounds less like a cold, impersonal analysis of a problem or situation and more like an answer or a solution. And maybe that's the same reason I don't feel as happy or as proud as so many of my dear friends and family do - because while it feels like I've been given a diagnosis and a job, I have been given; in reality, an answer and a solution.
A Prologue; or, We End at the Beginning
Here's living in hope that one day soon I will learn to synch my feelings up with my reality. Here's living in hope that my friends and family will accept my thanks for their kind words of support and encouragement and continue putting up with me. And finally, here's living in hope that I will make it through to the other side of tomorrow to leave the worry of right now in my dust.