I’m not very good at being Nobody.
Once upon a time, I was Somebody at work. When you are the homeroom teacher, yours is a starring role. Everyone watches to see what you’re doing and how you’re doing it. Meetings are geared toward you. Your mailbox is filled, and so is your inbox. Parents and kids know who you are before you know them.
Back then, when I walked into my school building, I heard my name echoed down the hallways by a dozen people smiling their good mornings and how are yous. When I needed help, it always appeared quickly. I knew what was going on. I belonged to a team.
But now? Now I’m Nobody. I’m new in the school, so no one remembers my name. I’m only there once a week. I’m just a specialist, and not one of the important ones like Music or P.E. No one else at the school does my job, so I’m a team of one.
When I make a request for someone to fix my broken projector, it goes unanswered for three weeks because the homeroom teachers needed their work done first.
And I get it. I say, “When you have time…” and “I appreciate it,” and “Whatever is the easiest for you.”
I try to act like I belong. I smile and say good morning and wear my badge so I don’t have to hear, “What was your name again?” more than twice a day.
I tell myself that my job is important to my students, even if I’m just playing a tiny role in a very large production.
At the end of the extraordinarily long day, I wave goodbye to my classroom for a week and go pick up the boys at one school and then another.
As I walk through the door to each classroom, I see the little head look up, lock eyes with me. Suddenly there is a huge smile and whole-body happy and arms reaching out to hug me.
Which reminds me that where it counts, I’m more than Somebody.
I’m the Mama.
I love joining in at Pour Your Heart Out. I find so many thoughtful posts there every Wednesday.