My final concert at my current school is tomorrow. This will be my 10th formal concert at the school. Over the last five years I have grown to deeply love the students of this community. I have seen them grow up, lose teeth, gain siblings, break bones, learn to multiply, learn to read, play the recorder, lose parents, tie their shoes, laugh, cry, sing, dance, and pray. They are challenging, funny, generally hard working, impatient, kind, friendly, forgiving, loving, curious, concrete, abstract, dedicated, and resilient. Being a teeny part of their lives has meant more to me than I can possibly explain.
I have not been perfect. Not a day goes by where I don’t think I could do more or be better. But, they remind me often through their singing and their smiles that I must be doing something right.
The trick of teaching elementary is that teachers are often forgotten by memories that don’t have their full long term capacity yet. This is ok. I am learning to let go of the fact that life is fleeting and change is inevitable. I feel like the contribution I have offered the music program and the community is simply a root and that now I can release it and let go. This is bittersweet, rewarding, and relieving.
I am so grateful to have grown so close to a community that the thought of leaving is difficult and powerful. I hope that as I move on that I will build another set of roots and grow deeply entrenched in the lives of a new group. For this is what it means to be a passionate, connected educator.