Sentimental exhaustion

I’m hunched over in my teacher chair exhausted. This is the last week of school. Summer is just around the corner. Boxes, supplies, posters, decor, and books comprise an organized chaos that envelops half of the floor space and several desk tops. As I survey my semi-barren classroom, I’m filled with emotion.

Emotion #1: Exhaustion

I’m physically, mentally, and emotional beat. 6th graders take a lot out of you– so does planning for them, grading their work, cleaning up after them, managing them, loving them, and trying not to scream at them. A school year is just the right length– any longer and we would have all quit. Summer is what keeps us teaching, what keeps us sane.

Emotion #2: Sentimental

This is my first classroom. I’ve been in it for two years now. Both years were difficult in their own ways. Both years were fulfilling in their own ways as well. I may not be here next year. I just don’t know yet. I may be in another classroom down the hall, I may be in another school. But this will always be where I started, where I made my first mistakes, where I celebrated my first successes. This yellow elongated cave with no windows has been my home for two of the most challenging and rewarding years of my life. I’m going to miss this space.

So, as I count down to Friday (2 more days with kids and 1 without!) I’ve got a lot going on in my head. I warned the husband that this week I’d be running the gamut of emotions. I reminded him that last year I sobbed all of the way out the door. But then he reminded me of something. Brian reminded me that this year is different from last year, that everything would be different from now on.

True, I may not know what classroom or school or job I’ll be in next year. True, I’m saying goodbye to some of the craziest and most amazing students ever. True, that this week is hard and exhausting and a wee bit tumultuous. However, the difference now is that I have him. I have a husband who will always be there, no matter what or where I’m coming home from. I have a husband who will listen and console and celebrate with me. No matter what God has in store for me, I’m not alone in this journey. He also promised to put up with and love me this week through my insanity. And boy, am I glad of it!

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