Monday, July 24, 2017

Somewhere Between Sharpened Pencils and Clorox Wipes

Well, the time has come again to slowly start seeing summer as a distant memory and realize that class bells will soon be ringing, but before that happens, the classroom has to be put back together, cleaned and decorated just the right way. Before a teacher can truly get back into the excitement of school, the five stages of grief must happen.

1.Denial- At the start of July, I had just finished teaching summer school and realized that I had about three weeks left until I needed to go back to work in the classroom. There was absolutely no way summer was disappearing this quickly.

2. Anger- This summer I had planned for my career to possibly take another avenue, and when that failed to be the case, I started to associate that feeling I was having with school in general. Even though this moment was fleeting, I still needed to glide through this step to move on through the process.
3. Bargaining- If only I had not taught summer school... If only I had taken that trip when I wanted to.. and so on and so forth as I literally felt the warmth of summer drifting away.
4. Depression- Last week I decided to get back into the swing of things and come work at school. Between the basics of getting a classroom up and running, I also had to set up my online course I teach through HLGU, so needless to say doing a little work at school needed to happen. The moment I walked through the door, I felt tired and already overworked. I spent the entire time at school feeling sad, which resulted in absolutely nothing productive. I started to question if what I love to do, teach, was starting to no longer become a love, but a job.
5. Acceptance- After a summer full of summer school and family health concerns, I slowly came to the realization that this summer was not one of the best or most adventurous, but was life. You can't live in the past, so live in the moment. Instead of panicking at time, which is always most fleeting, embrace it.

When someone loves their work, they embrace it full force, and that is what I have done with teaching for seven years. However, to continuously keep something as a passion, I have come to the realization that you have to take a break. Even if it is just a night of watching Netflix while eating some popcorn, go for it. Those papers that need grading, do it tomorrow. That classroom furniture that needs Febrezed since that certain child decided to roll all over it right after P.E., it will be stinky tomorrow. Teachers aren't invincible, they're human, and humans need to recharge after a while.

Which is why I took a weekend away with my best friend, and it was just the trick to prime myself for working at school. Needless to say, I am back in my classroom today mapping out the decor of the room this year. Feeling great and I have back my start-of-the-school year excitement where I smell sharpened pencils and Clorox wipes.

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