Before I begin typing let me begin by saying that I am in no way complaining about having a summer vacation. To me, it is one of the BEST parts of being a teacher. In fact, it makes me wonder why not everyone wants to be a teacher. I love summer vacation so much that it is mind boggling to me that most people don't have one.
That being said, I absolutely hate the transition back to school. While I love summer break, I really do love teaching children just as much. What I don't love so much are things like getting up when it's still dark outside, boring meetings that usually end up frustrating me, and packing my lunch every morning.
Tomorrow, starts the school year. The students officially come on Tuesday, but I will get to meet them all tomorrow. I actually love that feeling of finally getting to see the new group of kids come into the classroom. Each year, my classroom is filled with the most interesting, fascinating, inspiring group of children and I truly am thankful to have the chance to get to know them. But, it is always a bit rough getting used to the routine again.
But this year things feel a bit different. As I was complaining to Carla (who pretty much turns into a saintly saint this time of year) about going back to school, she reminded me that this year, going back to school is a good thing. On summer break, all I have is time. Time to sit and think about when we will be chosen by a birthparent. Time to sit and look online at other people who have been waiting to adopt to see how long they had to wait. Time to sit and read the stories of other people who have run into unexpected problems along the adoption journey. Time to get stuck in my own head and wonder how we will ever be chosen amongst all of the wonderful families who are waiting to adopt. As you might be able to tell, and as Carla has seen first hand, sometimes having all this time is not exactly a good thing. So as I head back to school, I am thankful that I will soon have other things to occupy my mind. Things that I love to think about. Things like how to make my students care about the world around them or how to get them to be proud of who they are. These are things that motivate me to do my best as a teacher and right about now those things seem like really appealing things to fill my mind with.
The other piece that is different this year is that I can't help but wonder, "Is this going to be the group of kids that I will be teaching when we are contacted by a birthparent?" "Are these going to be the parents that I will have to tell that I will be leaving for a while to take care of a child?" I truly don't believe that anything is going to happen this school year, but I can't help but wonder. I can't help but think about what will happen when it is time. These are thoughts that I couldn't even have imagined having at this time last year, and now I am somewhat consumed by them.
So as I start this school year, there is a wide range of emotions brewing inside. But I know that whatever happens and whatever emotions are going on, when I walk into that classroom on Tuesday, there are going to be 21 eager faces who will need my attention and I am so thankful to have a job that lets me step outside of myself for eight hours a day and worry about their needs instead of my own!