Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Unimaginable

The unimaginable happened yesterday. The unthinkable. Yes, I'm referring to the school shooting in Connecticut. It leaves me speechless to think about it. To think about it as it happened, after it has happened, and even this morning, as everyone wakes up. There are parents left without their children. There are children without their parents. There are students without their classmates. There are students without their teachers. It is unimaginable.

As a teacher often we're told we aren't doing enough. Look at the test scores. Look at the bullying that happens. Look at this new thing we should be trying. As a teacher what you don't know is that I have students that call me Mom. My own kids call me their teachers' names when they're home. What you don't hear is the story they have told me about where their Elf was this morning. You don't know the confidence they have in me as their teacher when they are in my classroom.

We talk about making our classroom a safe place to be. We talk about respect. We talk about listening. We talk about speaking with kindness to one another. We don't talk about guns.

Kids are not supposed to go through something like this. Neither are teachers. Neither are parents. It is unthinkable and unimaginable.

The thing about yesterday is that I wasn't even at school. I was at home with my kids. They didn't have school so I took the day to be with them. We stayed in our jammies until 11:00. We read books. We had cinnamon rolls. We went sledding. We had lunch. We met Mamma and did some shopping. I didn't even hear details about the shooting until I was home and turned the TV on at 5:00. I managed to go through the whole day without hearing anything. I wonder how my colleagues reacted yesterday. I wonder what they felt as they were going through the day. I wonder how many kids from my class went home and talked about it. I wonder how many kids from my class went home and still don't know about anything. That would be my kids. Unless my kids see something on TV or hear something at school (which they probably will), they're not going to know about it. I'm not going to talk about it with them. They don't need to hear that other kids their age aren't going to have a Christmas.

What my kids are going to hear is that I love them. They are going to get squeezes from me. They are going to have a normal routine. They will continue to know that school is a great place to be.

And on a final note, I pray, as hard as I can pray, for all of the families, all of the teachers, all of the people in the community they live it, that they would be comforted as best as they can during this time.

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