And now you are here. These are the words that one of my teachers said on the first day of school, and they stood out to me so much. Here we are. This moment is all there is, and I cant begin to tell you how I wish I could hold on to this time for just a little bit longer.
A thousand blessings for your bravery. Welcome to a new journey, and to being a compass that will guide the way for your students.
You will find that being a teacher is very different from being a student. There is more height in teaching; your students will look at you in the hopes that you have the answers. So know that what you do has ripples. Be slow. Be thoughtful. Be playful. Grow into yourself, and allow for space to change. You may find that the teacher that you always imagined you would be is not the same as the one your are, at least that is how it was for me.
For me, at the start of the journey I was scared; I became a leader in a place where I only so far been led. I held so much self-doubt that I even deserved to stand in the front of the room. I was no wiser and no more sound of judgment than I was as a year ago as a college student. I struggled with knowing how much to say, how much to hold silence.
Soon, though, I found that I had everything to give. I wanted to rip my chest open, to bear my heart and soul, to love so much that I had nothing left within me.
I dared to say and do things that I never would have in my past life. I got to read “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”, to continue tradition, to read Dr. Seuss to my students, and to come to know seventeen beautiful people that grew into awareness before my eyes.
I cannot presume to know how this journey will be for you. But understand that you have all the tools you need inside you. They have always been there, and they will always be there. Mistakes will happen, and you may feel disenchanted by the journey, but just know –
you. are. enough.
As I write this letter, I fear the passing of time. I fear losing hope, because teaching is such hard work, and we do not always see the changes that occur in our students. But I also know that hope is our job. It is our responsibility to always see another way, and believe that things can be better.
The best gift I can leave you is this- be present, and allow for the moment to wash over you, so that when you look back, you can know that you were there. This moment was yours, as fleeting as it was.
May you be free
May you be light
May you be a warrior
May you be filled with love.