Sunday, July 27, 2008

In the Woods: Part Two

I do not answer naturally to the name "Mrs. Lawson." For substitute teaching purposes, I learned to do so last spring, but it wasn't a quick thing. Mostly I was used to being called, "Hey, [The Older Daughter]'s Mom!" This will change. A lot is going to change.

A week ago one of the high school English teachers resigned unexpectedly from my daughters' school. This last Friday evening I was approved by the school board for the position. In three weeks I will be responsible for seven classes every day. The final schedule is not yet in my hand, but the preliminary one has me teaching creative writing and folklore/mythology as well as multiple sections of sophomore English and a couple of other classes.

Thus, it is settled. I have looked into the woods and there I have seen my fate: great looming grizzlies of state requirements, acres and acres of towering stacks of papers to grade, ROUS's (Ridiculous Oratory and Uncomfortable Shoes) and in the deepest, darkest depths of the educational forest, Julius Caesar himself lurking sulkily in a cave while Brutus lumbers about with the conspirators making reassuring and flattering noises to draw him out.

Someone hand me the bag of breadcrumbs. I'm going in.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Into the Woods

Funny, isn't it, how lives are lived in chapters, how changes can be effected in a matter of weeks or days, turning the order of our comfortable (or excruciating) lives around, flipping them upside down and leaving them resembling nothing we would have ever anticipated? Sometimes our own actions precipitate those changes; sometimes they're entirely out of our control. Either way, there's no going back. Things have been altered permanently. Even if we try to undo whatever action opened the chapter--such as getting a divorce or giving the child up for adoption--we're now someone we weren't when the first page was turned. We can't write it over; we have to go on as the characters we've become.

Here at Possum Box Lane, big changes are afoot, changes we (mostly I) set into motion, but certainly not changes I ever expected to come about as quickly as they are. It's dizzying. At more than one point I have found myself blinking in stunned confusion somewhere beyond not only words but also comprehension. By next week the plot will almost certainly be set in its new direction, although whether I'll find myself in an enchanted forest or a thorny maze remains to be seen. Either way, it's into the woods.

(Disclaimer: I might add here that neither my marriage to Great Scott or the familial status of our children are in any way at risk. Not even a jot.)