I have literally spent all day trying to think about what to blog about today. Literally. I had a million things going through my head and kept discarding them one by one for various reasons. Too dark, too depressing, too many people would read it and think I was talking about them, too whiny, too....well, you get the picture.
Then, it finally came to me. Well, it came to me with the help of Facebook (my name is melicity and I am a Facebook-a-holic). Instead of blogging about how much I am currently hating life and all that comes with it because I think it is UNBELIEVABLY unfair, I will blog about this happy and true story:
Tonight I was perusing through my friends on FB. I came across a young man who had been in my very first fourth grade class. I saw, much to my horror (and I only say horror because of how OLD it made me feel) that he is married. Wait? How on earth can he be old enough to be married. He was just in fourth grade like last year, right? Ok. Maybe more like 16 years ago, but still......
Anyway, I commented to him how old his being married made me feel and then I had a hunch. He had a friend who was also in my first fourth grade class. His friend was a good kid and I really liked his parents. I wondered if his friend was also on FB. Much to my delight, there he was. Also married. And with a SON. I fear I need to go cane shopping tomorrow.
Anyway, this second young man...I shall call him "D" (mostly because his real name starts with a D and I am to darn lazy right now to think of a good pseudonym for him. But apparently not too lazy to spell "pseudonym" correctly, go figure.)...and I had a nice little conversation. He is doing well, his parents are doing well, his little sister (who I also taught in 4th, 6th, and 8th grades--long story) is doing well. I was happy to hear all that. Very happy.
About the same time I was also having a conversation with a current students who is about to be in 11th grade. She was telling me about one of the little girls that was in her summer camp class. This particular little girl (who is going into 2nd grade) happens to be a favorite of mine. Frankly speaking, if I ever am blessed to have a little girl, I want one just like her. This little one was telling the 11th grader how much she loves me and will miss me when she moves away after this coming school year. (Yes, I am devastated that she is moving and try not to think about it. Her mother is in the military and I pray almost every day that her orders get changed so they can stay here. I am selfish like that.) I said to the 11th grader that is would be nice if all the kids liked me like that. We talked for a bit about that and then I told her this true statement:
I do what I do because, on rare occasions, I am rewarded by having a former student come back and tell me about what they are doing with their life. I get to hear about how they are a college graduate, successful in their field of choice, married (or not) and with a child(ren) (or not). I get to see the fruit of my labors. The reward for my tears and frustrations and sleepless nights. That is when my job is worthwhile. That is when all of the angry parents, rebellious students, and other issues that I deal with don't matter. That is when I realize that no amount of money I could make could replace the feeling of pride I feel when I look at this productive member of society and know that I had a small part in creating what they have become.
It doesn't happen often, but when it does, it makes everything else...the fact that my BFF is moving, the fact that I am watching yet another friend get married and it still isn't me, the fact that, everywhere I look I see a pregnant women or a newborn and I ache because it isn't me, the fact that, because of everything I just stated all I want is to be able to talk to my mom about it and be comforted by her but I can't...all of that pain and hurt and frustration disappears for a little while and I bask in the glow of one of my "babies" and their accomplishments.
Right now, I live for those moments.