“This is our Happy place.” It’s even posted on the wall. And usually from August through May, it is our happy place. But today, when I walk into the classroom, I see those words and it doesn’t seem happy. I feel like I’m in a movie and the past few months replay in my mind.
I remember the lost teeth, watching the students working together. I remember the smiles on their face when they figured out the math problem or finally got the shoelace tied. The spring is usually the most exciting time of year. This is what we have all worked so hard for since August. This is the time of year when the “light bulb” starts to go off and all of the boring lessons we have been doing, come together to make sense.
We won’t be building robots this year, we won’t have our Mother’s Day Tea Party, we won’t be publishing our story book, we won’t have any more field trips, or the end of the year awards ceremony.
Instead, I stand here looking at the calendar that still says March 13—the day time froze. I think that’s what hurts the most. I don’t feel like I have had enough time with these children. These beautiful faces come into my room in August, with an imaginary note that says, “I’m only here for a year. But in that short amount of time, I promise to fill your heart, make you laugh and love you forever.”
I love my job because of these amazing faces. They are the reasons why I have never felt like work was work. Not seeing them each day is tough. Knowing that when we go back to school, these babies won’t be my babies. They will be months older, wiser and I’m sure an inch or two taller but I hope they know they will always be welcomed back into OUR happy place.
The truth is that distance does make the heart grow fonder but time has to move forward. I know I will see them around school and on the playground, so that helps heal the heartache of this year. I just hope they know they will forever be in my heart.