The teacher’s spring is in September, not April. Everything is both new and familiar, with a chance for a fresh start each time.
Back in April, the year was setting on my job as the gifted teacher. I’d gone around and around in my head and with various others trying to determine what I’d be doing now. After much up and down, I signed the paperwork to do the job share as a fifth grade language arts teacher at a school a half hour away.
Almost immediately after I’d done it, the very job I’d wanted became available. Gifted ed. position but two and a half days rather than one, at a school five minutes from my house. I felt crushed, but there was no way I could walk away from the commitment I’d made.
Then another position came through, at another school close to my house. And another. Then another at my former school, where I already knew almost everyone’s name, in proper Cheers style.
I consoled myself by thinking that this proved I could get that position again in future years. I also told everyone who asked that I was sure that someone at this school, in my new class, must really have needed me to be here this year. The universe has its mysterious ways, and I could question them or go with it. I decided to go with it.
As the summer ended and I began preparing to teach this new grade in this new partnership, I had no doubt that it was the right place for me right now. Each piece fell into place, and I felt again that same thought: Someone here must really need me.
The day before the kids and parents came to Meet the Teacher, I stood quietly, looking over the classroom. Almost everything was ready, and I was excited to see who would come through our door.
(And when they did, they would see this bit of fabulousness my partner had up…)
Looking over the room, the air filled with anticipation, was when it hit me. Not like a ton of bricks, but more like the knowledge washing over me.
Why had I thought I was here because a student needed me?
In that moment, I had an overwhelming sense that I am here because I need one of them.
I don’t know who it is yet, or maybe it’s all of them. But I do know that it has turned my expectations of this year upside down, which I’m fairly certain is the right side up.