For the sake of keeping my writing authentic, I will tell you that I never thought I would want to stay at home with my children (but I have and still do respect those who work at home immensely). However, there were several times when I pondered how wonderful it would be to have Connor and London home with me all the time, to snuggle them and feed them and be their only caretaker.
The closer it came to going back, the more sad and anxious I became. It seemed irrational even to me, seeing as how there are only four weeks left of the school year.
However, if I know anything about myself it is that I easily become a creature of habit, and I do not enjoy having my routine changed. It's why I cried for weeks when I found out I had to move rooms and teaching positions in November, why I cried on my last day before maternity leave, and why I was so reluctant to come back to school today.
However, God reminded me today, as He does many times, that He is in control, that He has a plan, and through my amazing students and colleagues He reminded me why I genuinely love going to school every day.
Here are a few reasons why my return to school was so special:
Several students in my first period sophomore class (You know who you are and I am forever grateful for your kind welcome back to school.) stayed after school yesterday, hanging streamers from the ceiling, door, and podium, blowing up balloons, making posters and post-its, leaving roses, and notes all over my computer, and even bringing donuts, milk, and juice for the whole class.
I can honestly say that I do not believe I have ever taught a more thoughtful group of students. They really care about their teachers, each other, and their community, and I am soaking up every last day with them.
The last photo of confetti was actually a welcome back from Mrs. Wilson and a gigantic confetti "gun" of sorts. She never ceases to amaze me with her kind spirit and her love of fun and laughter. Thank you, Pam.
Of course, I cried when I saw my room this morning, happy tears, tears of a reminder that I love my students almost like my own children, and even though I still missed my own children, I felt back at home at school, and I know this is where God wants me, both in my home and working with these precious people I am so blessed to have as students. I am also blessed to work with wonderful, Godly, fun-loving people who welcomed me back all day long.
The day got even better when my dear friend and colleague Sarah brought this to my room:
I am so thankful to everyone who, whether they knew it or not, were instruments of God's love to me today. I have been blessed and humbled.
Thank you again to my students for the biggest surprise of my teaching career; you are the best!