Find the Blessings!
Months ago I looked upon this school year with excitement and anticipation as I was going to start at a new school after twenty years of teaching at the same school. But things quickly changed when we found out we would be teaching virtually. All of that excitement disappeared and was replaced with uncertainty.
This school year has started out harder than ever. I feel like I am a first year teacher all over again. I experience sleepless nights and bouts of anxiety over how I am going to meet the needs of my students in this virtual world. I think about how I am going to build relationships and create a community? These questions are a constant in my mind on a daily basis. I feel like I cannot relax in the evenings or on the weekends. I miss the human connection and closeness that I had with my colleagues at my previous school. Teaching at a distance has not allowed me the opportunities to build relationships with my new colleagues like I have wanted to.
But the most amazing thing happens when I begin teaching. I forget about all of the uncertainty, anxiety and exhaustion and I turn to my students. When that zoom meeting begins I am in my element. I love my students and I love the community that we are building together. I enjoy their sweetness, curiosity and laughter. I realize that they are the silver lining and they are my blessings. So this year I choose to focus on them. I choose to highlight my blessings.
I begin with a young man with some disabilities which require accommodations for his learning but you would never know that. He is the ray of sunshine in my day!
I have never met a person more positive than him. I am sure he has encountered more challenges in his young life than some adults in their whole life, but his optimism shines so brightly that it diminishes any obstacles he may have. He always greets us in the morning with a cheerful hello and a wonderful smile. We can see his caring heart as he expresses how much he misses his classmates. He shows his love for learning through his daily enthusiasm. His energy is contagious.
This wonderful child is one of my blessings this year. I am grateful that I have the honor of teaching him. I believe he was put into my life to teach me about optimism and perspective. I think I need him more than he needs me. He is a true hero of love!
Even though these may be trying times, there are blessings all around us. We don’t have to look far because most of the time they are right in front of us!