Monday, March 03, 2008

spring: you can't see it, but it's coming.

My grades for the 3rd quarter are due on Friday.
I received an email reminding me (us) of how and when to export my (our) grades electronically and I realized, with a start, that the semester is half over. The general panic that sets in when kids realize that after Friday they cannot do anything to affect their grade, and the associated nagging that goes along with that as they beg, beg, beg for extra time or extra credit, is eclipsed by one fact that is undeniable:
My work year is 3/4 over. There is 1/4 of the year left.

In and among all the nonsense, over-bearing parents demanding special treatment for mi hito, gang members and the kids that have been expelled from other schools (and the one or two that I wish would get expelled from this one) is the certain knowledge of the coming of my golden summer.

My golden summer.

This is the reason that people teach. Don't misunderstand - it's not that teachers just bide their time until summer. It's just that we can ONLY do what we do if we are afforded some time each year because it takes about ten weeks for the bitterness and weariness to fade, and to get our sense of optimism and excitement and dedication in full gear again.

Actually, for many of us, optimism has faded somewhat by April, and then we hang in there because we know what's coming: we plant seeds in the spring and tend them during those ten golden weeks because they, at least, are far less heartbreaking for all our nurturing and tending.

I chose to work with kids: thrown out of other classes, other schools, or whom have recently been released from jail into the public school system. Every May I throw my supplies into boxes and say, "that's it, I've had it, next year will be my last. "

But then, over ten weeks, that certainty will fade. Ten golden weeks. My golden summer.

They're not so bad, I'll think, following my late morning nap.

Next year, I'll think as I sip my morning espresso, things will be different.
I will be different, I'll think, as I head out for my morning run.

mischivious imps!
I'll think as I climb a hill on my bike.

For ten glorious weeks I will follow my bliss. Hang out with retired friends, like SW Tri gal and Hartley, if they'll have me. Unhurried. Unruffled. My clothing will be sporty-spice meets REI end-of-season-sale. I'll get up each morning, smell the fragrant chocolate flower, and then shower. I'll visit and subtly harass friends who get paid way more than me but don't have summer off. Maybe lunch with Sweet Baboo.
Maybe this year will be the year that I get that hammock, and read that growing pile of books I don't seem to get to during the school year.

And you want to give this up? Sweet Baboo asked.

Over ten, golden weeks I'll forget how horrid and frustrating it is between August and May. And in August, I'll head back for another year, full of optimism and excitement.
This year, things will be different. I'll be different.

My grades for the 3rd quarter are due on Friday.

spring is coming, and summer is right behind.

yesterday, I bought 5 packets of flower seeds.



  1. Happy planting...

    I just spent the last hour updating my reports....I am only half-way finished...bleh!

    March, April, May....piece of cake, right?

  2. OH so true! Enjoy your last quarter... Count it down and salivate as every day goes by!


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