So the day has finally arrived: WG is in her first full week back at school (she started last Thursday) and LG started Middle School today. For the last couple of months I've been looking forward to today, when both kids are back in school for a full day.
So why was I crying walking home from dropping LG off?
I didn't sleep well last night. When I did sleep, I had anxiety dreams.
The middle school is HUGE, and there are SO MANY kids, and they're SO BIG!!!!!! And since the move, whenever I leave, LG gets anxious, asking after me and sometimes crying until I get home. He seemed fine when I left his classroom this morning. I hope he stayed that way (I'll find out in about 90 minutes). If he didn't, he'll be fine in a couple of days, once he gets into the routine. But he WAS excited last night: He kept saying "Sleep, wake up, school!"
After I walked home I got into the car and left to run some errands. I went to the grocery store for the first time by myself in 6 weeks. I sat in a coffee shop. I kept reminding myself that there was no rush to be anywhere, and it felt...odd. I'm sitting here now trying to relax, but it feels strange to not be checking on the kids every 10 minutes, or herding them into the car, or taking them to the park.
And I have this constant, fairly high-level hum of anxiety. Which I imagine will stay with me until I pick him up.
And WG doesn't get home now until 4:00!
They're growing up, and I'm not sure I like it!
Yesterday I was thinking (yet again!) about what I've been doing with my life. We met up with some friends who are in town with the national touring production of "War Horse" (we're seeing it tomorrow). They mentioned auditioning for the Broadway production, and we talked about our friends who are writing for HBO and the networks, have TV series they created coming in the Fall, and plays they've written being produced on Broadway.
To be honest, I was feeling a bit of a failure. Granted, many of these friends don't have kids, and the ones who do don't have kids with special needs. This morning it occurred to me that, while I may never be a Broadway actor or playwright, I have two great kids with a lot of challenges who are thriving. And I'm so proud of them I'm surprised I don't burst from it. And our friends who don't have kids tell me they're jealous of me, as well. Because sometimes it's just not possible to have it all.
Earlier this morning I accepted 2 jobs that were offered to me last week. I'm going to help one company develop a theater curriculum for public school kids who have Autism, and I'll be the "head teacher" for the SF Shakespeare Festival's Midnight Shakespeare program in San Jose, which brings Shakespeare to elementary and middle school kids. It's a program I taught in the City 12 years ago, and it's terrific. The now-head of the program is a woman I know from 20 years ago at Shakespeare & Company. We met up again at the workshop in March.
Kismet? I'd like to think so. 20 years and 3,000 miles has to be more than coincidence.
So it may not be Broadway, but it's something that, hopefully, will make a difference.