Sometimes the most glorious experiences are also the hardest. I haven’t been focusing on the difficulties of the week, partly because I don’t want to lose the momentum, and partly because they’re rather significantly overshadowed by the excitement and the delight of the new experience of beginning a new teaching position.
I am tired. I cannot wait for the sleep that the weekend brings, the rest and the quiet, the chance to leap from the whirling carousel for a moment. I have confronted my most regular anxiety dream head-on this week: wandering the halls of my old school, rushing to find a class that may or may not already be over, not sure if the stairs I am on actually lead anywhere. While I did not get physically lost this week, and I was in all my classes on time, being there brought it all back. I have taken to carrying a clipboard with all the important information on it: where I need to be and when, lists of phone numbers, seating charts, my lesson plans for the day. It’s like a lifeline.
Mostly I think I have managed to look the self-doubts in the eye. Deep down I know that I am qualified and competent to do this job, but repeatedly this week the grouchy little doubties have gotten their tiny feet in the door for a few moments. Mostly I have been able to shoo them out like the wasp we shooed out the window of the classroom yesterday. Getting started on a new thing will always entail a bit of a learning curve. I keep reminding myself that if my students see me make a mistake or change my mind about a plan, perhaps that is helping them to learn flexibility and adaptability.
And my children have been fine! I was more nervous for their first day of school than they were, and now after two days, they’re pros at the bus ride, confident about getting to their classrooms, chatting about their classes. Begone, wild anxieties!
1. Small child marching around the house, chanting: “Always keep your dear teacher happy!” Apparently it’s a kindergarten classroom rule. I may take that one into the high school classroom.
2. The House Fairy Magic that set up another child’s stuffed cats on his bed reading a book. The boy was so enchanted that he carried book and cats around all evening and could hardly eat dinner for chatting with the cats about “Each Peach, Pear, Plum.”
3. Sleep. It’s coming. No alarm tomorrow morning.
4. Affirmations. It is amazing how big a perk a little affirmation can be in the middle of a muddle.
5. First opus of the Dawn Chorus. My wake-up is earlier and dawn is later, and now we have converged again and I hear the first mutters and murmurs of the Dawn Chorus, instead of just the later whoops and hollers.
May we walk in Beauty!