Thursday, February 9, 2017

My "Last Day of School" A Few Months Too Soon . . .

I stumbled across this simple, yet profound poem today. The final line encapsulates the essence of how I feel. Tomorrow I will tell my precious students goodbye. I promised them we would finish my all time favorite read-aloud, A Line in the Sand. After lunch, we will make Valentine's Day foldables with our first-grade buddies. I'll fuss at children in the car-tag lane one final time, and I'll pack up a few boxes of books. My "last day of school' has arrived a few months too soon this year, and I'm feeling fragile, insecure, and contemplative. 

After all my colleagues vacated the building today, I sat in an empty, quiet classroom reflecting on the joys and struggles of teaching. These anchor chart-filled walls have been my home for the last five years, and it's almost impossible for me to imagine trading a classroom for a cubicle. So many memories, outbursts, and celebrations have occurred here, and I will miss this cozy space and the caring community my students have created. 

Tomorrow I will get to practice being brave. I will act my way into right thinking as I try to remind myself that change is good for me. And as I turn the final page on this chapter of my career, I will look ahead with a deep sense of gratitude and open heart. 

My new supervisor sent out a weekly memo on Wednesday which included the following bit of wisdom. 

Hope is a powerful force and innovation is the antidote for complacency. I will give myself permission to grieve for a moment, and once the wave of sadness passes, I will step into the arena and boldly embrace the endless possibilities of the future. 

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