I spent my day today at school, with all of my teammates and some other colleagues, distributing laptops to students and families. It was hot and chaotic (although our school definitely has a good setup and plan and it was impressive) and the best day I’ve had in a while. As a team we tried to check each third grade laptop request to try and have that child’s classroom teacher take the laptop to the family outside. It didn’t always work for a variety of reasons but the majority of the time it meant we got to meet our families and kiddos, if they were there.
The chance to meet any of my kiddos in person was wonderful. Being able to introduce myself to families and make this initial connection was also a gift. This year, connecting with kids and families feels challenging because we can’t sit down together and talk. It’s not impossible, but it’s not what I know so today was awesome.
And then, this afternoon, I got the most wonderful email from a mom I met today and I am just sitting here, in the corner of my bedroom that serves as my office, trying not to cry and feeling blessed beyond words. This mom took the time to share about her child, their family, and their history. She included pictures and she wrote in such a clever way, connecting to something she already knows I love. And she asks, as she did in person this morning, what the family can do to help me this year. I am overwhelmed. In the best possible way.
There are so many things that have me feeling anxious and depressed right now. My teaching situation feels like something of a perfect storm of less-than-positive factors. This mom just lifted me above it all. I was already feeling lighter, after a day with kids, families, and colleagues. But in this moment, right now and right here, I feel hopeful and excited. It is truly a gift.
I am looking around at how lucky we are to be alive right now.
I’ve missed that feeling.