It is she.

25 Oct

I am special…

I am a teacher,

which,

in many cases, means that I am sort of a professional mom.

I wipe away tears,

wipe away boogies,

kiss boo boos

and fall in love,

each and every day at work.

I am special…

I have been working with children “professionally” for the past 13 years (which is half of my life),

and can safely say that my last year of teaching was my absolute best.

Maybe it was because I was pregnant, which made everything sweeter;

maybe it was because I had the most sensitive, sweetest, most adorable and fun class;

maybe it was because I loved my co-teacher like an adopted Jewish mother;

maybe it was because everything in my life seemed to be falling into place all at once,

or maybe it was some combination of all of those reasons,

but I truly loved going into work every single day.

And that, my friends, is a gift.

If you look, you will see…

Now, one of the things that I haven’t written too much about is that I love to sing. I also teach music. My classroom is always filled with songs.

One such song is the “Where is ‘Thumbkin'” song, used to introduce each child at the start of the school day.

“Where is so-and-so, Where is so-and-so? Here I am! Here I am!”

You get the idea.

This song is an old standard. I’ve known it for years. I’m guessing that you have, too.

Well, there is another verse to this song that I didn’t learn until this past year of teaching. At the end of going around the circle, and naming each student by name, we would all join together in singing,

I am special,

I am special,

If you look,

You will see,

Someone very special,

Someone very special,

It is me.

It is Me.

This verse never ceased to touch me.

Maybe it was because I was pregnant, which made everything more powerful, as raging hormones tend to do;

maybe it was because I had the most sensitive, sweetest, most adorable and fun class, and loved each child, dearly;

maybe it was because I adored my co-teacher like an adopted Jewish mother, and cherished our time together;

maybe it was because everything in my life seemed to be falling into place all at once;

maybe it was because it touched me, literally,

as each time I sang the words “it is me” I would place my hand, ever so gingerly, on my growing belly,

giving a little shout-out to the precious person that was growing in my womb.

Someone very special.

I went on Maternity leave in the middle of March,

and bid a tearful goodbye to the best class I’d ever known.

My kids, who had been loving up my big belly for months,

having whispered ” Twinkle Twinkle” to my stomach, to help soothe the baby to sleep,

having greeting me, each and every morning, with a gentle belly rub and kiss,

having asked me 8,000,000 questions about how the baby got in, how she would get out, what she looked like, what her name would be, and more,

having drawn pictures to decorate the baby’s room,

and showed me what it was like to truly fall in love with a child’s pure, kind, dear soul,

wished me well, as I left them, my kids, my adopted little family,

to start this new family of my own.

And so, having been out of the school building for six months, I nearly forgot about my favorite song.

Where is teacher? Where is teacher?

(I guess that’s what happens when you go and do something like give birth; you become consumed by all things baby, and sometimes forget about the simplest things, like where Thumbkin is.)

I, of course, remembered the first verse just in time for my first class in September.

It quickly became part of our daily routine, and my new class enjoys our favorite circle time song.

Here I am! Here I am!

Yet, it was not until this past weekend that it hit me like a ton of bricks;

I had been forgetting about the precious last verse.

I was sitting with the baby, singing some made-up song to her,

as she blabbed along with me,

when, out of nowhere,

the words to “I am special” began spilling from my lips.

I am special,

I am special,

If you look,

You will see…

As I began to sing, tears began to fill the corners of my eyes, spilling over onto my cheeks.

This tiny baby was no longer in my belly.

This someone so very special was before me,

unable to be stroked just under my shirt.

And, just like that, I lost it.

I broke down,

overcome by my emotions.

Even now, I am unable to articulate why this was so moving to me.

It just was.

I keep trying to put the feelings into words. I keep writing things like “happy” and “longing” and “nostalgic” and “sad” and keep deleting them as I go, as none of them seem to fit.

How can you describe the feeling of loving someone as much as I love this baby,

and being so amazed that she used to be inside of my belly,

and even more amazed that now, a year later, she sits before me and smiles as I sing to her about how special she is.

Really.

If someone out there has the language to describe that emotion,

please,

have at it. I defer to you.

If not, just trust me.

My heart is beating so quickly as I write.

Before,

when I would sing I am special,

it felt right, as she was still inside of me; a part of me.

Now, it no longer makes sense.

Where is baby? Where is baby?

She’s no longer in my body.

Yet, she sort of is.

I don’t mean this to sound sappy, but she’s still in me,

just not how she was before. She’s what makes my heart beat. She’s what makes me breathe. She’s what makes me me.

I am a teacher, yes,

as I am many things.

Yet now, more than anything, I am a mom.

And yes, I am special,

but, to me, she is special,

very special,

and if I look,

I will see,

that this someone very special,

is now what makes me

me.

 


 

 

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One Response to “It is she.”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Sometimes, just sometimes, « mommy, ever after - January 29, 2011

    […] I kind of already am. […]

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