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AAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!


I swear, today was one of those days when I just want to walk out and not look back.

One of those days when I feel like it doesn’t really matter what I do, I will end up being screwed in the end.

One of those days when I wanted to step outside and scream at the top of my lungs.

One of those days when I wanted to come home, crawl in my bed, pull my comforter over my head, and never come out.

One of those days when it is all too easy to forget why I keep going every day, why I keep giving it my best, why I keep caring.

I am so tired of the politics of it all.

I am so tired of that helpless feeling of being completely out of control.

I am so tired of jumping through hoops that just keep getting higher and higher.

I need to find my joy.

I just have no idea where it is hiding.

Come out, come out, where ever you are.

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Summertime and the Living Is Easy… Says Who?

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Kickin’ up my heels at the beach. LAST summer.

With all due respect for the geniuses that are the Gershwin Brothers and their masterpiece “Porgy and Bess,” but – that line is wrong.  On so many levels.

Oh, I know most folks believe that us teachers just spend all summer long laying out in the sun, workin’ on our tans.  Kickin’ up our heels enjoying our two month vacation.

I hate to burst that bubble, but that just ain’t true.

I use my summers to attempt to get caught up on all the things I can’t manage to get done the other ten months out of the year.

You know, when my days start when I get up at 5:30, and don’t end until I put aside my work and turn out the lights at 11:30.  And where my weekends are spent preparing lesson plans, and running errands – oh, and trying to spend time with The Three Little Monkeys.

During my summer “break,” I use the time to:

Attack my yard.  Landscaping.  Pulling up the ever-present ivy.  Cutting down wayward bushes.  Preparing the yard to TRY to get grass to grow.  Dirty sweaty work.

Clean my house.  And by cleaning – I mean THOROUGH cleaning.  Top to bottom.  Pulling everything out of cabinets.  Wiping the walls.  Reducing the layer of life that builds up during the school year.

Organize.  The storage room.  Closets.  Everything.

Paint.  The house I mean.  Not like PAINTING painting.  This summer, the Middle Monkey and I are going to finish turning his room into a solar system wonderland.

Make things for the upcoming school year.  Posters.  Charts.  Games.

Oh, and try to spend time with The Three Little Monkeys.

And before I know it, my summer break is over, and it is back to school I go.  And the cycle continues.

Well, back I go to continue my summer “vacation.”

I gotta say though, I’m getting one bitchin’ tan from all the yard work.

Stick a fork in me…

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I am not only done – but so OVER done it is no longer palatable.

Don’t get me wrong.  I do enjoy teaching.  Ok, I hear some of you laughing.  But, it is true.  On most days, it is still an enjoyment.  Notice I said MOST days.  But I cannot WAIT for this school year to be finished.  We are at 14 days (not that I am counting) and it can’t come soon enough.

This has been one of the most difficult, soul-stomping, exasperating of all my 15 years in the classroom.  I’ve had some real doozies – but there is a new champion.  Things had gotten better for a bit.  But, we finished up our high stakes state testing last week, so in the mind of a couple of my students, the year is already over.  So, this week in particular has been  – um – challenging.

On the upside, it is now Friday afternoon.  And I have at least a day and a half before I need to give serious thought to the goings on in my classroom.

Now, if you will excuse me, I hear a nap calling…

The Tiny Giant


Daily Prompt: Mentor Me

Daily Prompt: Mentor Me

Have you ever had a mentor? What was the greatest lesson you learned from him or her?

Although 4’11”, she is a giant.

Her fingers, gnarled with arthritis command our attention – directing us to sound as one.

Her red pixie-cut bobs in time to the music, a slight tremor beyond her control.

Her sharp, elfin ears can pick out the one voice out of sixty that has wandered astray.

Anything short of perfection is unacceptable – our pure devotion to her drives us to achieve it.  We would rather die than disappoint her.

“Reach for the blue flower,” she commands.  We can almost touch the mythical bloom.

She never married, having lost her fiance at Pearl Harbor.  She is instead married to her choir – the generations of students her children.

Her belief in my ability never wavered.

I was to be the one who “made it.”

I was to be the one who one day stood on a stage, holding an award, thanking her.

Yet, I never even tried.

So, the awards never came.

But every year, when I sing the Hallelujah Chorus with my church choir – FROM MEMORY – I always close my eyes, bow my head, and whisper…

“Thank you, Miss Carpenter.”

And I know she has heard every note.