So D. now has a surgery date! Yay!
It coincides with the first real day of classes! Boo!
But all will be well. FGS has an introductory day of classes, with all class sessions only half an hour, and then everyone heads off for class retreats and a school retreat. Then we come back on Monday for the "real" start of school. I'll be missing that Monday and Tuesday. But we're going to get a sub, and I'm going to film myself doing set-ups for the work they'll do that day so that I'll still have a presence in the classroom even if I'm not physically there. And in some ways, it's probably better to miss those early days than a week or two later.
I had such a good conversation with the director of the upper school just a couple of hours after we got the surgery date yesterday. I had been thinking of options by which I could still teach my classes and be at the hospital -- having a friend at the hospital until I was done teaching for the day, and then I'd run straight to the hospital from school -- and she listened to those plans. And then she asked -- and I so love this and need to start doing it as well -- "Do you want me to just listen, or do you want me to give advice?" I said I wanted advice, and she immediately said, "WN, let's get a sub. I really appreciate that you're trying to do everything, but I know you, and you won't be satisfied that you're doing anything well if you're trying to do everything. So let's get a substitute to take care of your classes that Monday and Tuesday, and then you can just be there with D. and not be thinking about school at all. And by mid-October, no one will even remember that you took those two days off at all."
Bless her. I thanked her for giving me permission to do what I really wanted to do. (And by "permission," I mean personally rather than professionally. I could have just told her I'd be missing those two days, and that would have been fine, but I pretty much needed her to tell me that I'm still a good teacher and a professional even though I have a personal life. Sad but true.)
And it really has been the surgery itself that I was worried about scheduling around. I think we'll be able to take D's recuperation in stride. (hee hee -- a walking joke for knee surgery!) I have a never-before-seen-by-me schedule this year in which I teach straight through every morning and then am done by lunchtime three days a week. I now have explicit permission to just duck out of school on those days (we're supposed to stay on campus for the entire school day), which will make PT and follow-up doctor visits and all the rest much easier.
We have a new head of school this year, and I'm going to make an appointment to talk with her to explain the situation. First impressions matter, and I don't want her to think I'm a slacker! I said all of this to the director of the upper school, and she said, "I don't think you need to do that at all, but I think you'll feel better if you do. And the new head is eager to meet people, so she'll enjoy the conversation."
My stress level and my blood pressure were both so much lower yesterday afternoon than they had been in a week. Just knowing when the surgery was going to be and that there was a plan in place for it is such a relief!
And there's still one week left of summer, and I'm going to enjoy it! I have some productive stuff I need to do, but I'm also going to get in some R&R before school and surgery recuperation both begin.