A Vegetarian cooking turkey day Dinner, the birth of my nephew, and the very bad case of sunday "scaries"
This was my second Thanksgiving away from Chicago and my family. A few weeks ago my brother sent me a text message informing me that his wife was going into labor. I immediately searched for a halfway reasonable flight, hopped on a plane, and made it in time for the birth of my first nephew. Plane rides are always an interesting time for me. This one being no different. I met a girl named, Kaleechi and she happened to be one of the most interesting people I have ever met. I won't write about our conversation because it was one of those moments that is best left stuck in my heart. To think, I got to experience even more wonder and magic just a few hours later.
He was born a little early, about 5 1/2 weeks. My sister-in-law was a rockstar through out the whole birth. I was standing outside the room when the docors stopped crying "Push. Push Push," and instead were met with a rushing medical team who infomed us she would need an emergency c-section. Not one time did Karla lose her composure. I however, realized that I will never be able to have children. I am a wimp! I was so worried about her, and the baby, and my brother. Words like "Heartbeat dropping" don't sit well with me. I'm sure they didn't for Karla's sister, my brother, or my mom and yet they were able to keep from almost passing out. I on the other hand thought I was going to throw up multiple times. I sat in the waiting room, finishing some homework, and thought about how there was going to be a whole new life being born into the world. I thought about how amazingly wonderful my brother was going to be as a father. How scared he must be. How brave Karla was. I thought about a lot in that waiting room. Within a few hours the doors opened, light peeked out and then came my brother and his new son. I will never forget his tiny fingers or small cries. He was so worth all the fuss. People always talk about their nephews and nieces, about this love they can't describe, and I've now joined that group of people, who have this unexplainable love for a small child that isn't quite their own.
Welcome to the world Declan.
So I had been planning on going home for Turkey Day but going home twice in that small period was not feasible. Instead I hosted my first Thanksgiving dinner. My boyfriend and three of our friends attended the little soirée. The end results were beautiful despite a few mishaps during the day.
The next morning with a slightly soree head, I made my way to Easton, PA to visit my "second family." The Townsend/Larsen/McHugh family have been in my life ever since my mom met her best friend on Willoway street back in 1988. We have experieced a lot together and the three hour drive was nothing in order to spend part of the holiday weeked with Karen and her family. Not everyone could be together this year but the splintered pieces seemed closer when I arrived Friday night. Again, this adventure was not boring. On my way I got lost because my GPS stopped working. Of course. I made the most of it
Now, It's 4:00 on Sunday and reality is setting in. We are at the place, I call the "Sunday Scaries." Last year, they were almost non-existent. However, with budget cuts and ever worsening realities, teaching has become a scary place again. I love my students and my co-workers but my job is one that causes most of us to get a lurch in our stomachs on the weekends. Not because of the teaching. I love weaving stories in front of the eyes of my students. That is not the issue. The issues are one created by the lack of funding and resources. Unfortunately, I don't feel comfortable going into details on this platform. I have not come home one day in the past month without feeling like every single emotion in my body has been used on caring and fighting for my students, all well having road blocks shoved in my path every step of they way.
I'll try to hold onto the warmth of the weekend, while not being able to pretend that I can't feel the cold reality of teaching in today's climate. Teacher's get a lot of slack for being complainers. I should say that I'm excited to plan my lesson tomorrow. I'm excited to find material that will light their minds for a moment. What drives the coldness into me is the fact that I will be up till midnight. I have to finish tasks that were created to provide fake accountability. I will do it. I will plan a good lesson. And I will ask myself, "How can we support our teachers and students in a more sustainable way?"
Keep Trying to Find the Love,
About the blog:
Emily Ann Hansen
I'm a writer and teacher living in Baltimore City. I'm originally from Chicago. I graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a BA in Fiction. Instead of babbling, I will list a few of the things in life that make me happy: