Metaphorical Laundry

“Where are all of these flies coming from?”

Could be me attracting them. I don’t remember the last time I washed my hair. I don’t fully groom myself for work. I save that for the weekends when I’m gonna see people I actually like.

*blank stare*

“Ok…Why don’t you go ahead and close the door on your way out.”

I’ve struggled to even start this post.

Mostly because I’m not sure I can write it without getting myself fired. If the wrong person reads it. Except the wrong people are probably the exact people that need to read it.

And anyway, here I am. With no idea where I’ve put my last fuck. So…

When I was in high school, I was under the impression that I wanted a career in a helping field.

I was under the mistaken belief that I wanted to help people. Make a difference. Change the world.

So my dumbass majored in psychology. And began working in the Human Services field.

Then I doubled down and got a master’s in criminal justice. And began working in the Juvenile Justice and Adult Corrections fields.

Then I went just all in on the dumbassery with a PhD in educational psychology. I no longer remember what I thought I was gonna do with that shit. But it’s ok, because I never finished the damn dissertation. Because the helping fields pay so little that one has to work multiple jobs at once. To survive.

And I’d also gone ahead and created two entire humans. That I had to care for. On my own.

So here I am. With a really nice house worth of student loans. Working in Education…

Trying to work out how…how in fuck did I end up here…

I worked in banking during my undergrad. If I’d just stayed there…do you know how much money I could be making right now??

I mean, I know. I love the children. I really do.

Particularly the ones that have lost their entire minds over the last year and a half. Understandably. And have been returned to us…completely feral.

So…pretty much all of them.

I love working with the challenging kids.

But damn, y’all.

This level of feral feels a little…extra.

And I’m writing this solely from my own perspective. Cause some of y’all out here pretending like this year has not already completely broken you down.

So I’m not gonna try and blow your cover on that. Even though the rest of us know. There’s just no way you’re not completely done.

Not working in public education.

There’s just no way any public school educator has any amount of anything left right now.

Maybe those Richmond School District educators. Who are about to get the week off. For mental health.

But honestly.

Nah.

That week is just gonna maybe get them back up to zero level.

Because ya girl just had a week off. A really exceptional week off. Less than a month ago.

But the moment I walked back into that school…

Fuck.

I don’t even know how to explain it to people.

Those memes? That say “I’m already March level tired?”

Nope. Not even close enough to describing it.

We had a sewage leak this week. And we were all like, hey, just don’t go to building five if you can help it. (Sorry bout y’all that actually have to work in that building…)

Had about thirty kids. In the boys bathroom. Trying to start their own fight club. And we were just like, again…?

The other day. The security alarm went off in the main office. And we all just continued about our business. Completely ignoring it.

At one point, new IT guy came out of his office. And stood at my door. With a questioning look on his face. Like…is someone going to do something about that…?

And I just looked back at him like…what?

“Should someone maybe fix it?”

*shrugging* Yeah, someone probably should.

And then I just went back to working on my truancy.

Truancy.

I used to be the Testing Coordinator. Who helped out with truancy.

Now I’m the Truancy Specialist. Who tries to figure out how to coordinate some testing.

Because truancy.

Truancy is like laundry this year.

Laundry for a family of 18.

If, by some miracle, you manage to finish the last load. And fold it. And put it away.

Your highly dependent lazy as hell family has gone ahead and just dirtied up all of their shit again.

And not just normal level dirty. That you might be able to tell them to just febreeze and wear it again.

Nah. Those little fuckers have rolled around in a pile of cow shit. Like a freshly bathed dog.

And then had the audacity to leave it in random piles around the house.

So that you have to go sniffing around the house. Searching under beds. To find it all.

And then get started washing again.

While your family yells at you wanting to know where their purple sweater is. And also, what’s for dinner.

And you ran out of laundry detergent fifteen loads ago.

And y’all.

I don’t even fold and put away my own clothes.

Hell. I barely have the time or energy to even wash them these days.

The febreeze is strong in my apartment.

Because after I spend the day doing metaphorical truancy laundry.

I spend the evening coaching.

And. I adore my cross country kids. Full on claim them as my own children adore them.

And they’re the ones giving me hope for our future.

But…I’ve got all this metaphorical and literal laundry…

And when I do actually make it home. At night. To my literal laundry…

I’ve got all of this testing to coordinate.

And the second job to do. Because working in education requires a second job. At minimum. For survival.

I’ve got nothing left. Like, not even anger. Or frustration. Or sadness.

I just helped my baby boy pack the last of his belongings into a Uhaul. So he can drive off to Virginia Beach. To, like, live.

And I cried. For exactly three and a half minutes. As I drove home.

And that’s it.

That’s all the emotion I had in me.

I mean, it’s fine. I’m no longer working for career satisfaction. I’m only working to pay for travel.

I’m just getting perilously close to no longer caring about student loan forgiveness. Or helping the children. Or the future of public education. Or the piles of metaphorical or literal laundry.

But for now. I’m gonna go ahead and plan out all of the gym and running time I’m gonna get. Once cross country ends next week.

And maybe. Maybe. That will allow me to find a few of the fucks I’ve lost this year. I’m certain there are some out on those mountains I’ve been missing.

But I still refuse to put the laundry away.

Y’all lucky I’m still wearing freshly febreezed pants.

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