Dave left, took his 6 by 6 bulletin board pictures down. The pictures, newspaper clippings, notes from students, notes from friends neatly fell into rubber banded stacks in Box 1. His organized binders of plastic – sheathed basketball and soccer ideas fell in on top. Box 1 was taped and sat ready to go. Poetry binders and journals easily filled box 2. One thumb drive and a lanyard were tossed in after the mini paper-cutter he adored. Box 2 was also taped up. Dewey, his giant library fish along with his tank were handed over to his special needs library helper for safe keeping forever. He turned the key one last time, leaving his media center, and coaching life that he had loved so much…forever. He had it all sewn up, all buttoned up. He chose a new path; one that would provide just enough money for travel. He felt ready.
I do not have it all in two boxes. I want to still engage in a search for a new principal. I am still interested in helping my teacher friends discover new ways to attack ‘close reading’. I am still willing to fight for assessment that informs our instruction. I am still worried because writing workshop is so fragile in our system. I am still wanting to engage in all the new tech tools that we have, to engage students. I worry and wonder if I will still continue to be relevant in the Master’s program I have taught in for seven years, if I am not in the classroom. I worry.
I don’t think I’m really done yet. There maybe will be something more. It may be stitched together differently than Dave’s ,and I know that it might take me a while to get it ‘all sewn up’, but somehow I know that I’ll eventually arrive in the spot where God wants me to be.
Their faces still fill me with joy. Joy like this can’t be packaged in a box. I’m taking it with me…along the way.