Essential.

Today, I learned that the White House has officially declared teachers essential workers.  They didn’t deem teachers essential because they respect their contributions to society.  They didn’t deem teachers essential because of the many sacrifices they make for the students they serve on a daily basis.  They deemed teachers essential for one reason and one reason only; politics. Here’s what they don’t see.  Good teachers love with a lifetime warranty.  They give what they don’t have to students who have never actually seen what they desire.  You see, teachers are not just dreamers, they are planners.  Good teachers are able to take fragments of potential, mixed with heaping tablespoons of effort, and convert them into reality.  Good teachers are like grains of sand; you may not remember each one by name or face, but you will never forget their contributions to your life, for it is the very foundation upon which you stand.  Good teachers.  At this time of the year, many of you don’t sleep much.  I know that you’re planning.  I know that you have occasionally neglected your own families because you need to make the families that you’re about to serve a priority.  I know that you want everything to be perfect.  Let me tell you about perfection.  Perfection is greatly flawed.  More than students want to get the perfect score on a challenging assessment, they want to know that you believe in them.  It’s clear they believe in you.  How do you know?  They keep coming back.  Let’s face it, in the environment of today, all that many of them have to do is not log on.  Good teachers, you’re important.  You have always been essential to me.  Once upon a time, a man with a horseshoe on his arm ate lunch with me and talked about football.  His conversations were magical because for the first time in my life, I didn’t know that some men could be kind.  For the first time in my life, a man was more interested in what I had the potential of becoming rather than the person that I was actually ashamed to be.  I’ve never said this to him, but I valued those lunches more than everything.  I don’t remember anything about junior high school.  The only thing that I remember is him.  When I left 8th grade, I cried.  My tears weren’t fear based, they were loss based.  I knew that we would never have lunches like that again.  He made me believe that I could go to college.  I went.  He made me believe that I could be more than my experiences.  I am.  He made me want to become a teacher.  I have been teaching for twenty years.  Those lunches are the vey reason that I started Youngstarz and Psi Nu Omega.  This was a hard summer for me because for the first time in my career, I had to bury two of my Youngstarz.  One succumbed to suicide.  The other was murdered.  In some ways, they are closer to me than my own because we were born in the same soil.  When I think of them, I have to remind myself that nothing real can ever be broken, and true love never dies.  To my fellow teachers, we are going to get through this.  I know this week usually feels like the days that precede the holiday season.  I appreciate you and everything that you do.  Thank you for your sacrifices.  Thank you for your patience.  Thank you for your endurance.  Thank you for your discipline.  Thank you for your love.  Most of all, I want to say thank you for helping carve out a career that I once dreamed would never exist for a hueman like me.  Can’t you see?  I am your legacy.  With everything that you gave to me, I made sure to keep a pocket full of seeds…. You are appreciated.  Patrick

As always, this week, please do something for someone other than yourself for no reason at all other than to make their lives better.  If you make it to where you’re going, please don’t forget to leave a map for the rest of us.  Always Choose Love…

One thought on “Essential.

  1. Aprell August 20, 2020 / 11:21 pm

    Beautifully written! 🙂

    Like

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