Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Two days left...
Today my economic stimulus check arrived in the mail: har har. I was laughing to myself, this is pretty funny, because when you live on one teachers salary, and lots of other types of incomes, here's what the economic stimulus check means: Oh, yay! This month I won't spend more than I put in the bank! And I realize, with a big sigh, that it is only because of my very planful and careful and fastidious nature, that when we lived on two teachers salaries and were still pretty basic people, I put most of one of our teachers salaries in the bank for 3 years, and used some of that to buy our house, and save the rest for... a rainy day? When gas prices spiked to $4.24 a gallon? I was not sure what the rainy day would be, but seems it is raining now. I would like to say, Thanks, GW, for the cash... but I could actually think of a thing or two that might have "stimulated" the economy more than this check for $1800 that will allow me to maybe contemplate being able to afford to continue to drive my car and heat my home. So, thanks, but also try again.
The whole teacher thing comes to light for real at this time of year: starting in 2 days, my kids will get 10 weeks of two parents at home with them. Ten WEEKS! Is this not worth the pittance we bring home, the "sacrifices" we make to live on this wage? (I put sacrifices in quotes, because I do not believe that the fact that we cannot budget to purchase new clothing, or buy lattes, or go out for dinner more than a few times a semester sacrifices, as these things are all privileges anyhow) So now, my husband being away from the house for most often 12 hours each day comes to fruition: now he gets to stay home. (Yes, although the students do arrive at 7:45 and leave at 2, he gets there at 6 and leaves at 4 or 4:30, because you have to PLAN things for them to do and then GRADE it). This is the beauty of life for us, beginning in 2 days, this time where we will hardly leave the house, and we'll just drink coffee on the porch each morning, and go for runs together, and play the guitar and sing, and then finally, head up north together.
Now this is something that I will talk about a lot here, starting soon, because our annual pilgrimage to my ancestral home is just the absolute basis of my existence here on earth. Every August, for my entire life, as my father, and his father, and his father, and even HIS father did, our family leaves our life behind and moves our life to DeGrassi Point, a beautiful, gorgeous, old, grassy point that juts out into beautiful Lake Simcoe in Ontario. There are old pines, huge oaks, lapping waves, and a family dock that everyone uses, with a little beach covered with toys. All the families there, if they are not related to me (which most of them are) have been there for generations, and the level of comfort there is unparalleled. It is home in the utmost sense: the only place on earth I have always known for what it is, where I can always know what to expect. And so thank god, thank GOD, I married a schoolteacher, and we can all go up there together for four, even five weeks each summer, and just be. Just be.
That is the world's most priceless gift, it is. To just be.
I just wish I could just be, without knowing that someone is missing. It doesn't make me love what I have any less, but it just makes me yearn to be that person who isn't babylost. And I know I will never be her.