Hopefully everyone has a teacher that they can thank in their life for inspiring or motivating them. Recognizing the impact teachers have on the lives around them.
I feel blessed to have had so many wonderful teachers throughout my lifetime, at all levels. There really are too many to mention here in any meaningful way. I'm proud to have so many teachers that I would consider family and I'm proud to have teachers that I call friends.
I'm especially proud of the teacher that I married.
I see what she goes through. I know the hours that she puts in. She has a coach's hours, with very little off-season between the two shows. Plus, she has the six class periods (four different, but related classes) that she has to be on top of. And she manages a summer travel opportunity for students.
I know the hours she puts in during the summer to prepare for the start of school and the new production. And the research that goes into show selection.
I know how she cares for her students. They are her kids and I know that every year, our adopted family grows as the kids move through the high school. Especially for those students who are in the shows. If you are in a production, you are one of her kids. She celebrates when you do and she hurts when you do. Like good families, they can have their dysfunctions and disagreements, but the members are better for their time together.
I know the push and pull she goes through to balance her work with her students and the school and with home. I hope she knows how well she is succeeding.
She is passionate and determined. Imaginative and fierce. She thinks I'm the one with more patience, but I remind her that she is the one that is surrounded by high schoolers all day and does not throttle them.
I hope she has been reminded over and over again how much she is appreciated.
The hours go way beyond whatever you imagine a regular school day is. The pay is far too low for what we ask of them. They cobble things together from duct-tape and bailing wire to make sure they have what they need for the class. And they succeed in spite of the ridiculous tests that we ask them to prepare students for.
They do it because it is a calling. Because they know that they have the potential to reach someone. To make someone else's life better.
So go hug a teacher. Go shake their hand. If one of them truly made a difference in your life, please let them know. You cannot imagine how much it means to them.
And for my part,
We notice. We thank you. How can we help?