Can you believe it? I am shocked at how quickly this school year flew by (other than January...January was a long, cold bitch). It is tradition at my school for the entire staff to be on the playground the first and last day of school to dismiss the students at the end of the day. Today, as I prepared to go outside and see the kids off, I couldn't help but think how differently I felt as compared to that first day in August. I was so nervous. I don't know if I've ever felt as scared or overwhelmed as I did that first week of school. My teaching skills left a lot to be desired, I had 400 names to learn, and I didn't have one friend on staff. It was absolutely terrifying.
Wow. What a difference 9 months can make. As I stood on the playground today and watched the kids leave, I laughed when I thought about the Miss G who started the year. It all seems so natural now. Obviously I'm no expert and have so much more to learn, but I feel a sense of comfort and ease now that I never thought I would. All of those things that seemed so daunting at the beginning of the year (learning ALL those names, making a few work friends) weren't as hard as I thought. As I helped with Field Day today (so much fun!), another teacher commented, "You know EVERY kid's name! Wow!". I've made some wonderful friends who make it so easy to come to work everyday and with whom I look forward to spending time outside of work (we truly have the best staff and I'm proud to work with people care so much about our kids and education).
People (my parents, my aunt H, other teachers) continually told me at the beginning of the year that it gets easier everyday. I just smiled (with what I'm sure was a crazed look on my face) and nodded, not sure if I really believed them. The other day my principal asked me to talk to our new music teacher about what to expect when she starts in the Fall. She is 22, just out of college, starting her very first job, and SO scared. I talked about a few things I wish I'd known when I started, but in the end I said, "It's going to be really scary. You're going to be overwhelmed and nervous and incredibly tired. But I promise, everyday get's easier." Because all of those people at the beginning of the year were right, it does get easier everyday. Until suddenly, you're the one giving the advice instead of getting it.