I am already a little behind on my A to Z Challenge posts. Such is the curse of being a full-time teacher who went nuts and entered 8 blogs without scheduling posts in advance! Lol. I also had a friend come into town, whom I haven't seen in 16 years. And I'm just tired. It happens. But I just needed to get this out of my system, so here is an interruption.
Today is my first full day of Spring Break. Once upon a time this meant a week of fun and relaxation. This year, I am having a bit of a hard time on this first morning. While the dates are not exact, the timing is still a big anniversary. See, the Thursday before Spring Break last year was when my father was taken by ambulance to the hospital. Friday was the last time I spoke to him on the phone. And Saturday was when he went unconscious. The actual dates are still a week off, but knowing that my Spring Break is here again just makes me sad and it hurts. I should be going home. I should be preparing to spend time with family and friends "back West." But it isn't in the cards this year. And this begins the final two months that complete my first year without my father. It isn't going to be easy, but I know I can do it.
My boss jokingly banned me from going home for Spring Break a few years ago. I went home on a similar kind of break layout. We were off on Good Friday, through the week following Easter. Only that year, the Monday after Easter, my great uncle was moved to Hospice. I was the one who had to tell my grandmother that her little brother was dying. I spent that entire Spring Break visiting Hospice, bringing food and support to Uncle Carl's family. I got to know relatives I had never met before. I was grateful to finally spend some time with my great uncle, whom I never got to know well, due to circumstances out of my control. And my very being was forever changed. He died in the wee hours of the following Sunday morning. I had to take that Monday off so that I could drive back to New York. I was too upset to do so on Sunday. That day was hell in my classroom, because my assistant had already taken that day off as a travel day from her vacation.
Twice when I had preplanned trips home in the month of September, I had loved ones die. The one year, it was my mentor, Sister Anthonita Porta, who was the Montessori Guru of our time. She was like Maria Montessori reincarnate and had taught me so much in our years of interaction. The other time it was my grandmother. She died the morning that I was planning on going home, anyway, to go to the Michigan-Bowling Green game. So now, there is a bad running joke that I don't dare go home for breaks, because you never know who is going to die. At the same time, I say at least people are courteous enough to do it while I am already there, so I don't have to make a special trip?
(Remember, I must treat sad situations with an element of humor, even though it can seem distasteful at times. Otherwise, I would never make it through life!)
All of this sadness aside, I do plan to have some fun over break. The weather is chilly, yet nice outside. The sun is shining. I can finally work on cleaning out my yard. I want to start taking longer walks, as my leg continues to heal. I need to be back into full-blown hiking shape by the time summer hits! And because The Man and I are both broke as a joke, we are going to find some more free things to do in this city and nearby areas. It is always a good thing to do. And then I can write about some of them. I plan on lots of reading and writing, too, over this break.