a thank you to teachers

this post is for all teachers. retired, current, or future. whether you teach sunday school or middle school or ESL. this is for you.

first thing's first.
y'all are crazy.
do you know that?

it's a beautiful, amazing, awe-worthy type of crazy. 
but crazy nonetheless.

i am not called to be a teacher.
nope. not me. no-sir-ee.
it is not my thing.
but for some reason I keep finding myself in teaching positions.
currently, i'm teaching 6 Nicaraguan children, between the ages of 6 and 9, their letters and numbers.
and let me be the first to tell you, 
teaching is still
not. my. thing.

but, through these teaching experiences, i've learned a few things:
(1) teaching is hard.
(2) it takes (a ridiculous amount of) patience.
and (3) i am so incredibly amazed by what y'all do.

so teachers,

thank you for your patience.
i'm sure you've had days where it ran out. in fact, i know you have.
so thank you for not throwing in the towel. thank you for putting on that movie instead of losing your cool. thank you for pretending that you still liked us, even though you might have wanted to scream at us after we disobeyed for the 700th time. 

thank you for persevering.
thank you for still persevering on day 29 when Johnny still couldn't recognize the letter A. thank you for being creative and not giving up on us. thank you for reading us endless Junie B Jones books day after day. thank you for encouraging us even when our letters looked like upside down hieroglyphic symbols. thank you for grading our endless papers even when you would have rather watched desperate housewives. thank you for coming to class each day, even if it meant missing special events with your own children.

thank you for pushing us.
thank you for showing tough love and not letting us take the easy way out. thank you for pushing us to be creative and to think for ourselves. thank you for your honesty when saying "no Shelby, the number eight does not look anything like the letter Z. you are wrong for the 7th time. try, try again." thank you for making us take those 15+ ACT practice tests that we all hated - we all know those are the reason we got decent scores. 

thank you for believing in us. for encouraging us. for investing in us.
thank you for teaching us that life isn't fair. that books are good for the brain. and that history isn't always boring. thank you for your support and your love and your endurance. thank you for decorating your classroom and for lesson-planning and for learning our stories. thank you for helping us with math and reading and teaching us about science. thank you for letting us dream. for encouraging our aspirations of being firemen or doctors or ballerinas. 

your job is hard.
and i applaud you for it. 
you guys are crazy.
and i am thankful.

so as school starts and you're both excited and somewhat dreading going back,
just know that you're making a difference.
remember that these kids are going to grow up and become somebodies.
and they will appreciate you.

because without you, English teachers, the authors couldn't write books.
without you, math teachers, the engineers couldn't build water wells. 
without you, Elementary teachers, we might still be eating glue and mixing up our lowercase b's and d's. and we sure as heck wouldn't have even made it to upper level math classes to even dream about becoming an engineer. 
without you, music teachers, symphonies would be pretty lame. 
because without you, science teachers, I couldn't go to PT school.
and without you, *enter type of teacher here*, we would all be a little stupider. 
and the world doesn't need any more stupid.
(and yes, stupider is, in fact, a word)

so thank you.
you are crazy.
and I truly appreciate that about each and every one of you.

i want to encourage you to go back to school knowing that not everybody can do what you do. 
so put on those Dr. Scholl's shoe inserts and have fun during recess duty.
wipe the mac&cheese of that kid's face and give some more high fives.
lesson-plan your heart out and tie some more shoes. 
teach the letter A for the billionth time and give the dorky kids extra hugs.
teach bird calls and don't stop believing. 

because these kids need you.
that even though it's hard, it's worth it.
because we do appreciate you.
it might take awhile to realize it,
but without you, we wouldn't be where we are today.
so thank you.


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