Well, the time has come. As much as I’ve been in denial that school is really starting up again, my new students will be walking through my classroom doors in less than 12 hours. Like many teachers, I like summer (duh). But this year is different, and I’m having a hard time getting psyched to go back to school.
This summer was my second summer with my son. Last year he was just starting to crawl, and it was a rough summer. This year was so much fun! We went to the pool, the zoo, the store, story time, and did all kinds of things together. I know I’m so lucky to be able to do that with him, and I appreciate that. But it makes me greedy for more! Last year I was ready to go back to work, to get back to my routine, and to have some outside adult contact. This year, I’m just sad. It doesn’t help that my school is a more stressful environment, and it doesn’t seem like that is changing any time soon.
But my point is not to complain. It’s actually the opposite. I thought of the phrase “choose joy” yesterday during my “back to school” faculty meeting. Administrations aren’t perfect, systems aren’t perfect, and things can get screwed up pretty badly. A lot of things went wrong the past couple of days at work, and a lot of us faculty members, myself included, have been complaining about a lot. And there’s a lot we could complain about.
But I don’t want to be miserable for a school year. I want to be a good teacher. I want to have positive relationships with my students. I want to enjoy my job. I want to enjoy going to work most days. And I realized that a lot of this is in my control. It’s not about my situation, but my attitude. If I decide that this will be a terrible year, it probably will be. If I choose joy in all circumstances, and pray HARD, it could be totally different.
Today, and this year, I’m going to choose joy.
What circumstance are you in that you need to choose joy for?