Periodically a student asks me if I have children. Depending on my mood, I respond with something like, “I have 125 of you,” or, “I have plenty of you people here – I don’t need ‘em at home too.” Either way, I always acknowledge that no, I do not have children of my own, but that I do think of my kids as, in some ways, my kids.
Don’t get me wrong – I know I’m not a mother to them. But I care deeply about my students and their well-being, and frankly, this minimal mothering as all I can handle right now.
I work 55 to 60 hours a week (some weeks up to 65), between my time actually at school and the additional time I spend planning and grading at home. I can’t imagine how I could possibly do my job well and take care of my own children well. I fully believe this will change as I grow more experienced and get to a point at which I want to make it work, but right now I have no urge to do both, nor could I handle both.
Mad props to all the moms (and dads, frankly) who manage both. Happiest of Mother’s Days to you all.