The Life of Bon: On School, Greg, and the Best of Times

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

On School, Greg, and the Best of Times

Hi Blog.

It's been awhile!  Eight days if you're counting.  I didn't go on vacation.  Nothing happened in my family.  I just didn't write.  But now I'm writing.  So thanks for still sticking around.

Things around here have been both a) very busy and b) very happy.  The best of both worlds.  School got out last week-- Friday was our teacher check out.  The Monday following (as in two days ago) I decided it would be a good idea to potty train.  That pretty much went up in flames.  Or up in pee.  However you want to look at it.  Now we're done potty training (for now) and I've decided instead to focus on more measurable and quantifiable goals. (Thanks, teacher trainings!)   Like number of times we can go to the pool each week.

But before this blog switches over to full on summer mode, I want to say a few things about school ending and my students and all that jazz.  I was weirdly emotional about this school year ending.  It is my third year at this school and my sixth year teaching.  It was a really good year for teaching and a not so good year for other things.

I had the sweetest students this year.  I taught four classes in a row with no prep, which is something only the stupidest people do, I promise you.  There were so many times I said to Greg, "I can't teach four!  I need one less!  Why did I teach four?!" and he would answer, "Which class would you take out?"  And I thought of my four classes, each one unique and weird and special in its own way and I knew that for some reason I needed all four of those classes this year.  My kids were so sweet this year.  So anxious to please.  So funny and thoughtful and kind.  I don't know where they came from, these extra special kids this year, but I am really grateful.  They came to me in a year when I needed it.

The last week of school I strangely really missed Greg at the school.  When he first quit I missed him fiercely, but after a few months it became the new norm and I feel like we all adjusted.   Greg quit in September and he only taught with me for one full year before that.  I've taught at this school without Greg more days than I've taught with him.   But then the last week the missing him came back strongly- I couldn't go anywhere in the school without being reminded of him there; students suddenly seemed to be asking about him nonstop.  The last three or four days of school are basically a joke because the kids have yearbook parties and assemblies and graduation practice.  There's a lot of hanging out for the teachers.  It's the best time to be a teacher.  Chill and relaxed with the taste of summer just barely on our tongues.  I loved these days to visit Greg in the drama room, to take a long lunch with him, to sneak into the daycare to visit June.  I missed him this year at graduation.  I missed him at the end of the year teacher luncheon.  The last days of school just felt so lonely without him.

Looking back on the beginning of the school year and everything we endured while Greg was teaching, I am really glad that Greg quit when he did.  It was not a sustainable job for him long term.  It was really ridiculously hard at so many times.  But there were also times when it was really ridiculously good,  That's the part that I still miss the most, and I guess that a part of me is still grieving the good that we left behind.  I grieve not having students in both of our classes anymore, I grieve not sharing the inside jokes we had about teachers and rules and whatever else goes on at a high school. I grieve not eating lunch with him every day in the faculty room.

I think I have mentioned on here before that a friend wisely told me when Greg quit that we were leaving behind one dream, but that we would find another, better dream for us.  I really do believe we are finding that better dream and that we are carving a path and a way for our family that can make us all unbelievably happy for years to come.  I am excited for that bigger dream, but last week I guess I had to give myself time to fully bury the old dream.  To let it have its place in my sad heart and to realize that there were really good things that we left behind with that job.  We are moving to better things, but it doesn't mean that there wasn't so much good with what we had.

So I guess this post is an ode to that- an ode to the good that we had together.  To the high school teacher dream- to working at the same school, to having our daughter downstairs in daycare, to eating pizza together in the faculty room, to sitting next to each other at parent teacher conference.  To the making jokes about the inappropriate shirt a student tried to wear, to understanding the woes of standardized testing and to stupid student learning objectives.  To the waking up early in the morning together, to driving to school with our baby in the back seat.  To the visiting Greg in the auditorium after school while he directed Les Mis, to going to the high school football game together on Friday night.  An ode to trying to slap his butt in the hall when students weren't watching.  To the administering the ACT together, to seeing Greg surprise me during his prep with unexpected Chic-fil-a.  To taking the Shakespeare team together on overnight competitions, to chaperoning the school dance and to sending snapchats during faculty meetings.

An ode to the best of times.

And a hope for more best of times to come.

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