I have a soft spot for teachers. Not only because my sister, my MIL, my SIL, cousin, Aunt-in-law (I could go on and on) are, or were, teachers, but because I need them. Desperately.
I hate when a parent says, "I decided to stay home with my kids because I didn't want someone else to raise them." I understand why celebrities say this — we mere mortals often think celebrities are spoiled and have an entourage of nannies who take care of their kids day and night. I realize they, feeling defensive, want to make clear they are not one of those celebrities — and they have only one nanny… two, MAX.
But when other 'mere mortals' say this? I clench my fist.
I am a mother. Of course I did not have kids so that someone else could raise them. (Is anything that simple?) But sometimes I don't know what the hell to do with my kids. This is where I — a mere mother — am separated from that breed of super-being: teachers.
To me, teachers and nannies and daycare workers — great ones — are similar; i.e. they are all there to help us 'raise' our kids. Does that mean, by relying on others, we are not raising our kids ourselves anymore?
When the twins were infants, we were fortunate enough to have a wonderful part-time nanny. Not only did she play with and take care of the kids, she helped me start them on solids, taught them (okay, me) muscle-building exercises that I had no clue about, and had other skill-building lessons that made me believe she was a demi-god. She was an expert. I looked up to her. And watched her while she 'raised' my kids, day after day, before my very own eyes! Because let's be real, I just sat there, exhausted, and watched her do all those things with half-opened eyes.
The twins will be wrapping summer camp up soon. I will be sad to say goodbye to their camp teachers. Every day the kids come home carrying an art project, or babbling some new phrase, or yelling a new song to me while we walk down the street. I love these teachers. I do not have the energy, the creativity, or the wherewithal to come up with projects like these to fill their days. Teachers have an innate talent and desire to teach and spread knowledge. Teachers have stamina, and are unselfish. Teachers love my kids and care for them. Teachers are good people.
I like to think I have some talents but teaching is most certainly not one of them. I'm not being modest; I'm a good mother, and I love my kids. But can I schedule a day of learning for them? Uh...I can barely schedule my own life without them.
It most certainly takes a village. My village is right here in our home, and continues right into the kids' classroom. I am a mother. I am not a teacher, and if you can't tell by now, I am in awe of anyone who is. And damn it teachers: I think you will do an excellent job of raising my children. So thank you. Thank you very much.