Wednesday, May 4, 2011
Five Senses of Appreciation
It's Teacher Appreciation Week. And boy, do I ever feel appreciated.
On Monday, I arrived to school and was given a gigantic, poster card signed by all my students. My eyes feasted on the sweet notes and drawings put there by 26 kids I will simply never forget:
"You rocked out my fifth grade year!"
"I'll never forget you!"
"You are like a mom to me. I love you so much!"
One girl even took the time to draw out individual letters on taped together index cards. She said that the letters spell out a word that describes me and she is giving me one each day this week. She gave me "M," "G," and "A" before I figured out that the word is "AMAZING."
On my worst day, on my hardest, most difficult, most patient-deficient day, I will read these words and will get a shot of 100% pure encouragement.
On Tuesday, I arrived to school and my students filed in, each carrying a flower. My nose took in the sweet smell of light pink peonies, fresh lavender, bright blue irises, and deep red roses all bursting into bloom. Each time I get a whiff of that gorgeous handpicked spring bouquet on my desk, I smile because I know I am loved.
Today, on Wednesday, I finished a long day. The bane of my existence is figuring out what to eat for dinner. But I didn't even have to think about it tonight, because my precious room mom cooked up a taste bud-tingling meal of fresh caprese, cannelini beans with fresh basil and tomato, and a whole loaf of chewy, crunchy sourdough bread. I ate that meal and was filled up - not just with food, but with gratitude.
Each day I've felt the big hugs from the kids in my class. I feel the smile lines around my eyes getting a little bit deeper. I feel my heart growing bigger with the love that I feel for each one of these unique children that God placed in my life this year.
I'm not sure what the rest of the week holds, but I know it's going to be difficult to feel any more appreciated.
Now I know:
My work to me is not a job. It is my joy.