Rolling Right Along

by

Dear CARMEN,
Congratulations, your FAFSA was processed successfully.

Awesome.

Prepare yourself to go further into student loan debt!

Woohoo!

I actually do not have a problem with this.

Of all the different types of debt I could accrue, furthering my education so that I can have a better life and may be of better service to those about me, seems about the best kind of debt I could have.

I don’t have any other debt outside of my student loans as I prepare to move forward in this next educational endeavor, having more doesn’t really bother me.

That’s just the way it is and I accept it.

I don’t know when I will find out how much I may receive, the application, though, has been processed, my taxes are done, I await further instruction from the school.

Specifically, I await the time and day I will be going in to do an interview with the department for a place on the cohort.

I am getting more and more used to the idea that this is really happening and that I will be pursuing something outside of being a professional nanny.

Today I confirmed that I will be meeting the guy from the Valentine’s Day/night dance for coffee (tea, really, no need to scare the man off with an over caffeinated persona) via a text message while I was at work.

He asked me how my day was going and I replied that I was having a little quite time drawing with one of the boys while his brother napped.

“Oh, you babysit…”

Ah.

No.

That’s what my ego says, no, I’m not a baby sitter, I do ever so much more.

But often times, of late, especially, I don’t care so much, yes, I’m a babysitter.

I’ve been one kind of baby sitter or another since I was young enough to still be needing a baby sitter myself.

I’ve baby sat my sister, my mother, my father, cousins, neighborhood kids, I was a lifeguard–a babysitter with a swimsuit on–a bar manager, a baby sitter with a beer in hand, in one way or another, all of my life, I have watched, with great vigilance, those around me.

I also believe this is what makes me a good writer as well, or at least a writer that has things to write about, I watch, I listen, I observe.

I see.

This will make me a good therapist.

Or so I believe.

There’s more to being a therapist than just that, and often times, especially over the last ten years, I have heard many a person share something with me and seek my counsel.

I have a lot of experience, field work, if you may, to lean back on.

I bristle, but not as much as I used to, when called a baby sitter, but ultimately, it’s just my ego needing to be stroked.

I am just as important as a person who is fluent in C++ or a tradesman or a lawyer or a barista.

We all play our part and I am just playing the role assigned.

I used to struggle against it.

I am supposed to be someone else, something else, doing something more important.

Though, really, I could argue, what exactly is more important than providing for the health, safety, and well-being of a child?

Besides, I know that I am not my job title.

I am what I do.

Really, I am paid to love and I got to do a lot of that today.

The boys obviously missed me and it was really fun to have a moment this morning before we went out to the park where they were both lying across me, snuggled up.

“Let’s just stay here a little while longer,” the oldest boy whispered up into my pony tail, he had wrapped his small paw in it and was spinning a curl around a finger.

“A little while longer, but not too long,” I said, and kissed his head.

“I love you, I missed you,” I told him.

In fact, yesterday, at 3 p.m. I was suddenly confused as to where I was and what I was supposed to be doing.

Usually I am with the boys heading into the pool at La Petite Bailene for swimming lessons.

I literally patted my bag and thought to myself, did I bring my swimsuit?

Not that I needed one where I was at.

I was off yesterday with the holiday.

But, there it was, that moment of longing to have the youngest one in the pool while the eldest got ready to see his swim instructor and I thought, I am really quite lucky to have this job.

Even when there is extra work, like there is this week, the oldest has a school vacation week, I am amply compensated with nice little perks.

Like fruit from BiRite and lunch out at the CrepeHouse.

The mom put extra money in the diaper bag and said take them out to lunch and get what ever you want.

Excellent.

It’s a really nice perk to get fed.

I have had jobs where it was expressly stated that I was not to touch the family’s food.

Most times I am encouraged to help myself, and I have, but this job, I really have taken it to heart, to eat there and let myself have nice snacks and tea and coffee when the mood strikes.

I do so much of the marketing and food prep it seems a part of the deal.

Today was homemade turkey and black bean chili with red and yellow bell peppers, tomatoes, mild chilis, and onions; and I also made homemade corn bread muffins (and oatmeal and brown rice for the week to have in the fridge).

Chop up a little fresh avocado and top the chili, cut up some strawberries, and a kishu mandarin from BiRite, and voila!

Dinner for the monkeys.

These “babysitting” experiences are just bringing me one step closer to what I am supposed to do next.

I never expected to be a professional nanny.

I never thought I would be applying to go to graduate school to be a therapist.

Don’t you know who I am?

I’m famous in my own mind.

The reality of it though, is that I am heading down a path I do not know where it will lead, only that it seems the next step to take is always indicated right before I take it.

The money for graduate school will be there.

And I can’t fuck it up if it’s meant to be.

I also can’t manipulate it into happening.

I just walk forward, into the blue room of unknown.

Knowing that I am taken care of.

Just as I have taken care of so many others.

So shall I be received.

With love.

My only debt then.

Really.

Is one of gratitude.

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