For so many reasons, I'm having difficulty convincing myself it's only May.
For one, the temperature has been in the nineties for the last few days, something that seems entirely out of context to me until at least mid-July. Milo has shed what appears to be a completely new cat onto my clothes.
Secondly, I've been having contractions-- real ones-- meaning that my summer baby will be joining us soon! So far I'm not dilated at all, but I am effaced and looking ready to go. The baby is VERY low, and the midwife thinks she'll be arriving on or before her due date. I am thrilled. These last couple of weeks have been quite uncomfortable, and now I've actually started going into false labor! I'll be getting pretty businesslike contractions regularly for an hour... or two... or three... and then they'll suddenly stop. It's driving me crazy, and I think it's even worse for Avery because he gets so excited each time. Oh well, every day the odds improve that this time it will be the "real thing."
Thirdly, and on a related note, I am not going to be going back to work tomorrow! Yep folks, as of now I am a stay-at-home parent. The midwife determined that my false labor is being caused by stress, and so my summer vacation has started about a week and a half earlier than anticipated.
I have such mixed feelings about this new world I'm entering into... I always knew it would be a possibility that I would not finish the school year, but I kind of pushed that possibility to the back of my mind whenever I thought about the kids I work with. I wanted so badly to get to see them off as they devoured end-of-the-year cupcakes and planned their summer adventures. I've watched so many of them grow and develop in wonderful, surprising ways throughout the year. I wish I could have known that the last day I spent working with them would be my last day.
On the other hand, I am getting more excited every day about life as a mom. I keep thinking of things I can't wait to share with my daughter, like snacking on melon slices at the farmer's market or taking a (very short) ride on Yakima's streetcar. We'll water the garden and walk to the children's museum and visit the library! Of course, I imagine that in the early weeks and months we'll also spend a lot of time at home, where I can clean up after her various bodily functions in privacy and crash on the couch when I'm exhausted... but the world is such a big and beautiful place that my head actually spins when I think of how wonderful it will be to share it with my baby girl. That's the sort of thing makes me love teaching so much, a job that I will miss and know I'll return to someday in some form or another. I suppose in a lot of ways I'll get to continue doing the job that I adore, only instead of having a whole class I'll just have a very special One.
Today I attempted to make myself useful by "helping" to wash the Element. Mostly I was in charge of operating the hose and pointing out missed spots, but it sure felt nice to get wet. Avery did all of the actual legwork. We also installed the carseat-- hooray!-- where I helped even less. My job was basically to sit behind the driver's seat and occasionally inspect the seat base to make sure it was at the right level. I spent the time between inspections making "I'm uncomfortable" noises and handing Avery the installation guide. Thank goodness I was there, right? Time for this baby to come out.