It has been awhile since I have posted anything. I am so glad that Lory has kept things up on the blog. We got our smart boards installed in February and I was busy with that and then my personal family kind of fell apart in March.
I realized this March that am I super grateful that I am an educator and especially in first grade. I wouldn't change my assignment for the world. It would take A LOT.
Let me explain.
In high school I thought I wanted to be an attorney, I wanted to put bad guys in jail. Dead set on it in fact. My first year in college I realized I didn't have the personality to be an attorney. I'm just not that type of person.
I transferred to BYU from Dixie State my sophmore year to be roommates with my cousin. I signed up for a Biology class (which kicked my butt) and fell in love with the sciences. I was going to do something with Environmental Biology. What that meant, I didn't know, and I didn't care. I loved science.
A friend of mine came home from his LDS mission in London that spring, and we quickly got engaged (we had known each other since I was 16). We tried to make things work so I could stay at BYU, but the stars were not aligning so I transferred again. This time we were both attending SUU. SUU didn't have an environmental biology program, so I went practical and decided to do secondary ed so I could teach high school biology. Teaching works well with a family, right?
My last year in college. with one quarter left, our oldest child was born. I hadn't quite earned my endorsement to teach, but I had enough credits to graduate. I was done, I was ready to be a mom.
Fast forward a few years, my husband had been teaching automotive at SUU for a couple of years, and my youngest child was entering first grade. I was ready to go back and finish my endorsement. A few phone calls later I learned that I was far enough with my endorsement that I would be student teaching at the end of my youngest child's second grade year. I wasn't ready to leave him with a babysitter quite yet, so I added the elementary ed endorsement. The education department wisely counseled me to just do the elementary ed endorsement, realizing it would be easier for me to be hired.
While working on the classes for my endorsement (a completely different world than secondary ed), I realized I quite liked what I was doing. The professors were certain that I would get hired to teach an upper grade because of my bachelor's degree. I felt very blessed to finish right when Iron County was opening two new schools, but even after interviewing several times I didn't get any offers. I had been approached about doing an internship while student teaching, so I was pretty certain I would get a job at one of the schools. I was crushed.
I had been asked to do a long term sub position for someone who was on maternity leave and was planning on starting the school year there. The day before school started I was called to interview for a position at Fiddler's. I didn't realize until I got there that it was for first grade! I nearly panicked, but I wanted a position so badly I held my cool. I got a call at 6pm the night before school started that the position was mine. HOLY COW! I hadn't paid much attention to the lower grade's core, I was supposed to teach an older grade, remember. I didn't want the responsibility to teach someone how to read, that is a big deal. I could mess a child up for the rest of their life. I had a lot to learn, and I jumped in with both feet. I loved every minute of it.
Fast forward 6 years. I have been having a great year, even felt comfortable enough that I had applied to facilitate at core academy for first grade. My husband had been having what we thought was some minor/routine health issues (arthritis, no biggie), when we learned he had a genetic blood disorder that had potential for some pretty serious complications. His blood work was starting to look weird, so he was referred to a doctor who specialized in blood issues. The afternoon he met with the blood doctor, our world was turned upside down. We have since learned that he now has most of the serious complications from his blood disorder, it isn't going to be easy for him to get his health back.
I walked away from school in the middle of Parent Teacher Conferences and didn't return for 7 days. My wonderful friends stepped in and planned for and took care of my class while my husband was in and out of the hospital for the next couple of weeks. I owe them more than I can ever repay.
When I finally was able to return to school, my darling first graders were so excited. I was so glad to be there as well. It felt as if everything was right with the world. Their hugs felt so much sweeter, their quirkiness so much sweeter. I realized more than once (not that I hadn't had this thought before) that week, I can do this for the next 20 years. No problem.
I am SO grateful that I was led to this profession, especially now that I don't know what the future may hold. I know that I will always have the sweetest hugs, especially on those days when I have been on the phone with 3 different doctors, or when I return from an unexpected absence because my husband has spent another afternoon in the ER.
I LOVE FIRST GRADE.
FIRST IS FUN.