I was sitting at my computer desk, back turned to my students playing in the room. My eyes started getting a wee bit wet, and my nose and collar bones felt hot.
Then I heard my name 6 times in rapid succession from a tiny voice behind me.
Me: “Yes? What is it? I’m a bit busy right now.”
Student: “Can I go get my snack? …Are you crying?”
WOW. Well I just got your peer to practice saying the /f/ sound for the last 20 minutes without success but YOU realize I’m CRYING.
Me: “I’m just feeling a bit sad now. Wash your hands and go get your snack.”
It was 1:47 PM and I just had to let it all out. There at my desktop, I cried. Speaking of snacks, I thought to myself, I need some cookies right now. TIME TO STRESS EAT.
I had just had two very unsuccessful speech group practice activities. One group was working on expressive language. The next group was working on the /f/ sound. It went awful. Terrible. That’s ACTUALLY what I wrote on the small group work sheet that tracks the dates and times they come to see me. It ACTUALLY says “terrible” on the page.
I cried for the students I couldn’t help say the /f/ sound clearly.
I cried for the student who came to me begging to play the expressive language game, even though her expressive language skills were just fine.
I cried for the same student who asked me if she could leave after two turns because the pace of the game was too slow
I cried for her again when I saw her wandering around the room aimlessly, bored at having nothing challenging enough to do.
I cried for her once more when I just wanted her to choose something to play with that would make her happy. Because she is a kid.
I cried for the student who I had to make a play schedule for because he is too immature to pick a spot in the room to play for more than 1.5 minutes.
I cried later on in the day when I had a social worker visit me asking if a certain student had confided anything in me lately. Any teacher who has ever had a social worker visit them knows what that means.
I cried thinking of how fortunate I am to have a great student teacher and then cried some more thinking of how I am possibly going to continue the rest of the year by myself when she is gone.
I cried at the fact I didn’t pack cookies for a snack today. Because I really needed those friggin cookies.
I pouted a bit to my #kinderchat and #wtdk friends on Twitter. Then I picked myself up, and moved on with the day.
I cried for the weak. I cried for the strong. Today was a day where I worried about every single one of my students and it became too much. I worry about each of them every single day, but today was just one of those days. Tomorrow is a new day.
Then I came home and ate some cookies. And some squares. Because they were right next to the cookies.