I go back to work in just over one week. I feel like I should be okay with it. I was prepared to be okay with it. The teachers at this school are like family. I trust them to love my children.
But I’m not entirely okay with it.
I’m okay with being a mom who works out of the home. I’m okay with the idea of it all.
I’m not prepared to leave this baby. I’ve left him too many times already. The day he was born I watched him leave me. Leave me open and bleeding and not ready. Neither of us were ready. Then every day for five weeks I left him. I held him, I felt his soft skin against mine, I looked into his eyes that so rarely opened. I signed consent forms acknowledging that saving his life could also take it. And then I left him. I left him knowing there would be pain and I would not be there. I left him with the physical distance between himself and the only home he had know for seven too-short months. I had no choice. He had no choice.
So even though I know he will be loved, I am still going to walk away from him next week feeling once again torn open.
Just like the physical wounds, the emotional wounds are slow to fade. There is numbness and pain, sudden reminders of the weeks we both lost and simultaneously gained. Both will scar. The scars will fade, always there, always a reminder, the passage of time rendering them less painful.
But for now there is not enough time. Too much distance. I’m not ready to walk away from him again.