The changing of classes seems a bit like a cattle drive: a herd of students swarming out one door and down the hallway while another herd of students swarms in the door and up the hallway in the other direction. I try to dodge past the students joking with their friends and shrugging into their jackets, but there are more students in front of them, so I content myself with their pace until we are free of the door. Then I stretch my legs into a quick stride to cross campus for my next class.
Thoughts in Many Different Directions…
As I do, my thoughts are going in as many directions as the students on campus. I need to work on my oral presentation—I was lucky enough to draw the name of one of the first essays we’ll look at in class, and probably the only essay I wouldn’t have wanted to present on—and get working on the readings. Is Lily napping or crying or playing happily? I could call my aunt quickly to see, but as I finger the cell phone in my pocket—set on vibrate—I decide she would have called if there were problems. I need to get to class, hand in the essay we annotated (unless it’s due next week?) and then I’ll go home for lunch.
Enjoying Being Back
I’ve had three days of classes so far and I am thoroughly enjoying being back in school. This semester I’m taking short creative nonfiction, short fiction, and the introductory writing course which covers, in this semester, creative nonfiction and fiction. So far all three classes are tying into each other in interesting ways; creative nonfiction and fiction are linked genres (I usually say that creative nonfiction is nonfiction written using fiction techniques).
Sunshine likes having my aunt to play with on Thursdays and two homeschoolers to play with on Mondays. Lily is still adjusting to the idea that Mommy isn’t around for those two days. On the first day I left her, my aunt said she cried the whole time. (What? My happy, sunshiny baby?) The homeschoolers said she was a bit better (and had a couple good naps) on Monday, but yesterday she was again fussy.
(As if knowing what I was writing, Sunshine just ran up to me and said, “Mommy, you’re home! I don’t want you go to school.” But when the babysitters are here, she doesn’t want them to go home either.)
On Wednesday, Lily had a nice two-hour nap and I had fun studying with Sunshine. We sat at the table and she colored while I read. Then we moved upstairs and sprawled across my bed, and she handed me pens as I highlighted and made notes for my oral presentation (and decided that under the bad language, the writer had a really good point to his essay). It was a fun way to get my homework done and spend some time with her.
Swept Away Doubts
There were moments, in our month of settling in here, when I wondered why I was going back to school. This first week of classes has swept away any doubts. I am thoroughly enjoying the challenge of lectures, readings, and assignments again, the chance to talk to other writers, to immerse myself in something I love—and then to come home, at the end of day, to be greeted by two little persons whom I love as well.