I’ve spent countless hours learning. Some in high school, some in college, and a lot in books. Funny, I’ve learned more as a teacher (to my own children) than as a student. Sometimes children have a way of showing you the things you never realized before or things you simply forgot. When your children speak, listen. You’re never too old to learn something and you will never know it all.
I woke up a little early this morning and after getting dressed, I strolled to the kitchen and removed lunches from the fridge (as usual), and placed them in their designated bags. I woke up my children from oldest to youngest and arranged backpacks. All in the same ritualistic motions as I do every morning.
Somewhere between my driveway and the school parking lot, I must have missed someone pressing “fast forward”. As I watched him gather his things in the rearview mirror, I couldn’t help but notice his hair perfectly combed to the side, his new school shirt crisp and clean, not a stitch out of place. He looked so sweet, so perfect, so brave. That was until the car door opened.
Walking to the front door of the school, I’m taking the 1 million pictures that I always do of every first and I can’t help but notice he seems anxious. With a few encouraging words from Mom, he was ready to kick Pre K butt! Just as we’re walking inside he let’s a small courageous smile creep out and says “Big boys don’t cry.”
We check in at the office and head for the classroom. Immediately I notice the door looks like a giant yellow
“minion“, a character from a movie he recently watched. He thought that seemed funny. Deep breathe, and the doors opens. He scans the room taking in all of the art, and bright colors covering the walls. The teacher is kind, bubbly, sweet, and within a second he takes to her. He seemed so self assured. Far different from the little boy who only moments ago hopped out from the booster in my back seat, and suddenly, this Momma wasn’t.
Do you really understand the impact a teacher has on a child or a child has on a teacher? I hope so. Our children will grow to trust, mimic, care for, and even love their teachers. Teachers carry an immense amount of responsibility. One teacher can potentially make or break a child. More life lessons are learned in a classroom than almost anywhere else. That teacher, has the ability, the right to to groom our children into young adults.
Being a parent is far more than just having a child. We are raising a future President, astronaut, teacher, pastor, coach, or any of the other 1 billion jobs out there they may want to do when they “grow up”. A teacher shares in that journey. When you send your child to school, you loose a little piece of control. You give another person the responsibility of helping to mold your future grown up. As a Mom, that isn’t easy for me and I’m woman enough to admit it.
Somehow, my mind seemed to have lost all control to function. As I was waving goodbye to my baby boy, it was as if I where saying hello to my little man. So full of pride for him and complete heartbreak for myself. I really don’t know how we got to this place so fast. Of course I cried, and I had to excuse myself to pull it together in the hall. Finally managing a goodbye, I left. As I made it to my car, and managed to drive myself to work I heard his little voice “Big boys don’t cry.” and I thought to myself “No, but Mommas do.“