Time for Me to Disappear

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I’m nearing the end of another road. It’s coming too fast, but at just the right time.
I’m giving up the reigns of my classroom.
I’m walking out the door.

And it hurts.

Deeply.

This is all part of the plan
of mentoring a student teacher.
I’ve been down this road before,
but it doesn’t get easier.
In fact, it gets harder.
I’m reminded that someday,
I’ll be closing the door,
on my life in the classroom.

I had to choke back the emotions
Meandered down to the library yesterday,
alone
knowing the class was going in full swing
without me.

I wasn’t really needed.

I have complete confidence in my student teacher.
Alex is bright, energetic, and a quick learner.
The kids love her.
They learn so much from her.
The truth is, so do I.
She has strengths that are not in my makeup.
She has insights and perspectives that escape me.
She is just what they need.

Don’t get me wrong,
I know I have value.
There is much for me to show her,
and model for her.
But she has the core down already
because she loves kids
she loves learning
and she is flexible.

So mostly,
I missing my students
I’m missing the fun we have learning together,
I’m missing the partner-teaching that my student teacher and I did
together these past couple weeks.

I remember years ago teaching a young protege
how to play racquetball.
At first,
he was all novice
And I was Jedi-master.
Dusting him,
Teaching him
And hopefully modeling
how to win with dignity.

Because winning was short-lived.

He was a quick study,
and soon surpassed me.
He was no longer protege,
And I lost my light-saber.

So I’m reminded of the principle,
John the Baptist told his followers
of the One coming after him,

“He must become greater,
I must become less.”

So it is with me now.
She must become greater,
I must become less.

My students will see less of me,
and I will see less of them.
Sadly.

But so it must be for now.
As I fade into grey.

I couldn’t be prouder of Alex.
I stepped into the room today,
as she was completing her first observation
with her supervisor.
She was teaching the students about anaphora,
using Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech
and creating little orators
out of 3rd & 4th grade students.

I applauded their speeches.
They lifted my spirit.
I had missed the lesson
but I witnessed the results.

Stirring.

Riveting.

And I could see it –

My own dream,
for Alex
and her own classroom.

I’ve been fading for awhile now
passing on life’s lessons.
My oldest daughter has superseded
many of my dreams for her
She travels the world sowing compassion
and I couldn’t be more proud.

My youngest daughter sprinkles her many talents
dancing, singing, baking,
and bringing joy to the people around her,
and to her father’s heart.

I have students who have written more
published sooner
run faster
and accomplished greater feats
in math, science, music and art
than I ever passed on to them.

And as I disappear from their view
I remain in their story
fading to grey
but filled with pride.

Reminded that someday,
I’ll be closing the door,
on my life in the classroom.

But not on the classroom of my life.

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6 thoughts on “Time for Me to Disappear

    • Tomorrow I’ll be posting an idea for a innovative, collaborative posts. I hope it intrigues you! I’m looking for a few people that might be interested in writing a collaborative piece, either with me, or with another writing friend.

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  1. I have a student teacher right now too, one of many over the years, and you’re right — it’s hard to leave the classroom and imagine what is going on in there without you! 🙂

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