The Day Mommy Went To School

My eyes pop open awake ten minutes before the alarm even went off. The house is sleepy silent. My body still heavy with sleep but my mind and heart are jumpy with excitement.

Today I get to go to school for the day.

At the downtown Vancouver SFU campus, I will be attending Symposium on the Book: What’s So Funny. It is a one day workshop filled with a panel of humor writers and teachers and newspaper book reviewers.

Because of the early start to do the hour long drive to the class, I prepped everything from my bag to my clothes the night before. My hope is to sneak out of the house to avoid the drama if both daughters awake.

In the four years of being a mom I have never been away from both of them for a whole day.  I am nervous hoping they will somehow understand. I am feeling guilty for leaving them even though they will be with their daddy. I also feel guilty because it will be my first day off to be amongst adults.

Truth is I have found that lately I am not a happy mommy. My tank is empty. I am hoping by attending “What’s So Funny?” I will find my humor again.

Laughter, they say, is the best medicine: the act of laughing lowers blood pressure and releases endorphins, making us happier and healthier.

Crap. The girls are up even before I finish my shower.

As I drive away, I see my family in the window waving god-bye. My youngest daughter who is one, her tear-streaked face illuminating my rear-view mirror. I almost turned around the car. My heartstrings are pulling me back home. I am a bad mother for springing this on my young children.

Yet, my foot stays on the gas pedal fueled by the songs blaring on the radio.

Because of the early Sunday morning hour the drive only took forty-five minutes taking me to the campus a half hour early. I immediately pick up my cell phone to check in at home, ready to pull out of the parking spot and come home.

Our conversation about how good their morning is going puts me at tremendous ease. I step up to the doors of the university feeling lighter in my step than I have in a long time. This feeling makes me laugh even before I sit down to find my humor.

It’s only one day and will do a world of good for this mommy looking for her funny.

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