Friday, December 3, 2010


Have you ever had a bad memory pop into your head and you feel like you're experiencing it all over again, with all the associated emotions? I hate that. It happened to me this morning as I was lying in bed.

I was waiting for Blake to wake up and started thinking about my teaching days and how the end of the school year played out for me. I was returning for the last two (long) weeks of school after having Blake. Evan had already moved to New York and I was still dealing with all the emotions of a new mother, which included recovery from a c-section and a failed attempt at breastfeeding. To put it lightly, the last place I wanted to be was with a group of 4th almost 5th graders who were trying to get used to their old teacher. I really loved my students, but I had a little baby at home who needed me and a husband across the country who hadn't held his son since he was a week old.

My students were excited to see me, but after the third, "When our substitute was here she let us (fill in the blank)" I was ready to head for the door. I politely told my students that I knew all about what they were allowed to do and that informing me of said activities was only going to make me cranky (or something like that). I was surprised at the new attitudes that had formed when I was gone. I couldn't tell if some of the students (mainly girls) were angry at me for being out longer than I had planned, or if it was just a result of growing up.

By the second to last day of school I had been totally offended by one student and jumped all over by a fellow teacher for not awarding her student a medal for winning a relay race. (Not even kidding.) The last day of school was bittersweet. I was so excited to have survived my first year of teaching AND pregnancy (which I do not recommend doing simultaneously), excited to be reunited with Evan, but sad to say goodbye to my students (well except the one that was so rude to me).

So that's why this morning I was so annoyed that I could only remember the end of the school year and the bad memories that were associated with it. I thought my first year of teaching went as well as it could have and I wanted to be remembering the fun times with my class, not the icky moments that made me question my career choice. And as much as I tried to remember the good times, my mind just kept going back to that one student and her thoughtless comment, and that one teacher who seriously needed to take it down a notch or two.

Now I'm wishing I had actually kept a teacher journal during my first year so I could look back on the good times. Because I know there were some really good times! (And if I remember them I'm going to compile them and blog about it.)


vdg family said...

Oh Whitney! I cannot even begin to imagine having my own class, teaching for my first year, and being pregnant.

Chelsea said...

Ya, like a first time teacher has time to keep a journal! I know what you mean though, I can remember some of the really good times, but it seems like the things that pop in my head the most is the one of two times where I was way too harsh on a student, or the day they made me cry (yes, I cried, in front of 38 14- year-olds, yes I was embarrassed, but they still loved me anyways) I am glad that I went into the profession I did, but I am more glad I am home now with my lil' man cub.