From Tragedy to Triumph
Today was not like any other, though it seemed like it was at first.
I woke up just the same as I always do: ate, showered, dressed & headed to work aiming for early, not just on time. I did some more heavy lifting & used it as an opportunity for exercise---& was scoffed at for not double parking at the front so I don't have to do so much walking. It's funny how afraid of walking we've become. Putting 1 step in front of the other simply because you can has clearly dropped under the category "That's some bullshit." Deep. I went to make copies but couldn't because of the line of teachers ahead of me. No biggie, the copies were on some think ahead type ish.
This is my "easy, breezy, Cover Girl" day in the rotation. I see 51 students instead of instead of 88. My break is longer, I can get more done. I watched the 8th graders Be Cool for their recess & watched the 7th graders go out of their way to show how gully they can be on the basketball court or how loud they can scream simply because they're girls. I watched students I had during my student teaching & analyzed their walks & the way they speak now & marveled at how NONE of it's different, it's just bigger--longer--taller--curvier...deeper-lower--higher pitched. It made me think of my own child & try to imagine if someone else is trying to process her growth. I know they are, hell, I am.
Recess ended & I went back to my classroom. I got my lunch, warmed it up, relieved my bottled up teacher bladder & headed back to my room to eat & call on the chill. & then tragedy walked in my room. A colleague lost a family member to gun violence. Following the story, wondering how in the hell she was still at work after receiving the news before the morning bell, we worked out a huge challenge for us both. I now feel the blessing of support dealing with my Special Needs students. Just like that (snap) my hair follicles found peace & ceased fearing being pulled out at the root trying to figure out just what to do with them that's effective but not frustrating for all parties. Win.
The break continued, I did a little intuitive work & double checked some things, brainstormed my next awesome idea for how to bring a skill/concept to life for my students & prepared to receive the last batch of the day. Some housekeeping issues had to be taken care of. Sounds simple, right? Wrong. Where children are involved, any number of Murphies can go down. Murphy is actually the extra invisible kid in every classroom throwing monkey wrenches into the best laid plans. One of my sweet faced babies wound up injured & the big guns, rather the big scissors, had to be called in. Sigh. When his tears began to flow, all help in place, I had to walk away because I couldn't bear to see him cry. He's 1 of the nicest little boys you ever want to meet & he wants desperately to know ANY & EVERYTHING we have to teach him. I couldn't take it. That led me back to my classroom.
It was here that what started out as a check-in became an unleashing...therapy of sorts. That part's super personal & shall remain behind the hallowed door of my classroom. But something else showed itself. I have a cheerleader. I've always felt supported by my cheerleader but never identified her as such. Cheerleader was honest enough--& either comfortable or ain't studyin' me--to hand me my BS while letting me know she's seen better & KNOWS better. I've been assessing what all this school year is going to mean &, like I tell my kids, sometimes you just don't know what you truly think/feel about something until you've said it (or written it) or had someone say it (or write it) & come into your lightbulb moment. I got work to do. I got lives to impact, I got IMPACT to impact, I got some things I MUST prove to myself, & I got a YUCK FOU I need to give to a group of naysayers who got me mixed up with somebody else. Ever the humble student, I also have some learning to do in order to prepare to make the grade for whatever this is setting me up to be able to do next or...as well as.
Women are deep puddles & when you trip & fall in one it's amazing who you discover is waiting with a life jacket for you...or offering you a pump so you can handle blowing up your own rescue device. I am not adrift alone, but those offering help are checking to make sure I'm smart enough to take it & to watch what I do with it. I see you seeing me & I don't feel exposed at all. Firmly planted.
Watch me move.