Shine Your Light

Day #3 of subbing for Mrs. P, who as it turns out, has pneumonia. The poor woman had come in today and realized that she was terribly sick and went home. It might be sheer exhaustion after eight months with kids who never stop talking that’s driven her to bed. Or, all the testing and workbooks…or kids blowing their noses and coughing and putting their fingers everywhere.

It occurred to me that it could be the classroom that’s making her sick. How do I say this? It’s a cluttered room; piles of papers everywhere, the walls plastered with grammar posters and weather charts, windows covered with kids’ work, blocking the natural light. Congested is the word that came to mind this morning when I walked in. I crawled over some piles and cracked a few windows.

As for me, this subbing thing feels like I’m running a 5K with my workouts consisting of very short walks to the end of my driveway and back. I am really out of shape when it comes to the institutional insanity of public education. When I passed the hall mirror earlier, I had that deer in the headlights look. You all know what I’m talking about.

I need my bed and a book; the perfect marriage. So, let me finish this piece with how my day started…

As I was heading out this morning, Dad hugged me and said,” Just go and shine your light, kid. That’s all you have to do.”

(ps. I hope Mrs. P turns off her phone, and allows herself to rest, and then rest some more.)

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