When I first left the corporate world and went back to school (at the ripe old age of 38) to become a teacher, I had two goals in mind. One, to be finished with school by the time I was 40, and two, to make a difference in at least one kid's life each and every year I teach.
So far I've managed to do both. However, sometimes you really aren't too sure which kid it is that you've affected in a positive way until the end of the year. And even then, it sometimes comes as a complete shock.
Today, after lunch, The Secretary comes into my room with a vase with flowers in it, and a big balloon that reads, "A+ Teacher" on it. It's Teacher Appreciation Week so I figure the PTO is handing these out to all of us. We have an awesome PTO and that's just the kind of thing they would do. I ask The Secretary if it's from the PTO and she says "no, it was just delivered."
Just delivered? What the...?
Well, I knew it wasn't from The Husband...he's a dear but flowers aren't his thing. He'd rather buy me a book (I do have lots of books).
So I look at the envelope that's attached and on the back it reads "You're the Best!!!...Ever!"
This is getting curiouser and curiouser. Who on earth is sending me flowers???
I open the card and it reads, "Thank you for being so nice and good to me even when I didn't deserve it. I miss you!!! Also thank you for being so patient with me. Happy Teacher Appreciation Day. "
It is from Stoopid Boy.
Stoopid Boy was sent to alternative school two weeks ago, much to my dismay. I just wanted to get him through the year without having to do that, but he had to go and do something "stoopid" (remember the hyperdermic needle?) and off he went. Stoopid Boy was a tough nut to crack, but once I did I absolutely fell in love with this kid. Now there are teachers on my team who would think I need my head examined for saying that, but it's true. He's a great kid, a bit of a goofball and a nutcase, but still, deep down, there's a good kid trying to crawl out. I miss him. A lot. Perhaps because there's part of me that likes the underdog, or a part of me who remembers what it was like to be a geek and a bit of an outcast. I'm not sure. But Stoopid Boy is one of those kids I connect with. I'm not sure if that says something about me, or something about him, or what.
But you could have knocked me over with a feather when I saw who that card was from.
And that just about made my year.