I recently watched “Inside Out” after many people encouraged me to watch it. I get why. It’s a good movie and I am currently understanding those mixed blue and golden memory orbs at the end of the film. Things are ending for me, and while I am incredibly happy and excited to be so close to the finish line of the Masters, I am also being hit with waves of sadness.
I have grown so much as a teacher in the past 2 years of this program. I have the confidence to do what I believe is developmentally appropriate with my students, and I now have a binder or two of research to pull on if I need to defend my theory of play, play, and more play with my young charges. While I am still not a huge “let’s go for a hike” person in my off time, I am more than willing to put on the rain suit (yes, I DID get a “muddy buddy”) and wellies and tramp outdoors with my students where we all get wet in the rain, dirty from the mud and somehow come in with huge smiles on our faces from exploring the great outdoors. Although I am tired of citing Dewey, I am embracing his ideas thanks to a summer course where my eyes were opened, and I think Loris Malaguzzi was brilliant. I have learned how to do SO MUCH with google (mail, slides, docs, hangouts, and more), and I am insanely proud of my website. (Really, I have started showing it to complete strangers!!)
I have met some bright, hilarious, talented, and geeky people on this journey. Our ‘off the cuff” meetings have me laughing so hard I can’t breath. They have let me vent over the frustrations of figuring out my topic and question, and they have supported me every time I have though of giving up. Some of them even understand my obscure references to Star Trek, Middle Earth, and the TARDIS. I even got to use my limited Kilingon knowledge. These people are the best, and I hope they know that.
I am excited to present tomorrow, I will be thrilled to finally submit the polished paper, and I rejoice over the opportunities given to me during my four months off to finish this and to work on myself. It has been a gift to get my health on the right track while spending copious amounts of time in front of the screen.
But still, I feel like crying. I will miss meeting with these brilliant people. I will miss the shared joy, frustrations, and laughter we have had. I keep forgetting that I am not returning to the students I left behind; the class that helped me change so much. I get nervous thinking about my return. I may have mentioned that I don’t like change, so I am struggling with the idea that I won’t have to write any more papers, do anymore research, and yes, I will miss having access to the books at the UVic library.
If you and I chat over the next few weeks, and you see me get weepy, I need you to know I am okay. I’m just adjusting to the new me. See, I have learned through this that I am stronger than I ever thought, smarter than I really believed, a better teacher than I realized, and that, although I may whine and complain, I am happy about the choices I am making. I have more to make. I’m not sure where my path is heading, but I can face it.
I am reminded of the Doctor (as I so often am) as I finish up this part of my life:
We all change, when you think about it, we’re all different people; all through our lives, and that’s okay, that’s good, you’ve gotta keep moving, so long as you remember all the people that you used to be. (Moffat, 2013)