Finally sitting down at home. Laptop open on the kitchen table. Freshly made tea at my right, still hot and half gone. It’s quiet. I’m the only one at home. I drop my shoulders and realize how I’ve been holding them up most of the day.
I sit and breathe. Sit and breathe.
My fingers are almost warm and the tea is gone. I sit back in my chair in a sloppy posture so that my hands reach for the keyboard and I wonder if I should sit like this more often.
I tried to teach some things today but mostly I set up the gym for play and observed. No one who was able was idle. I wonder often if I have taught my students enough. If I have taught them anything. If what I think I taught correlates to things they’ve learned. I wonder.
After school I had track practice and even if I have to drag myself outside to carry out my appointed duties, once I am there, I see it is where I belong. I teach elementary students but coaching offers me access to middle and high school kids, some of whom I have worked with for 3 or 4 years. It is no small thing to have their respect and attention.
I’ve been coaching for many years and while I know plenty about technique and training protocols, I find that my real strength lies in understanding kids. I work them but not too hard. I instruct but keep it short. They tell me things and I listen. Sometimes I run alongside them which I do as much for their benefit as for my own. We are creating a season together. We will remember each other years later.
After practice I managed to attend the International Baccalaureate (IB) Art exhibit put on by graduating seniors. I’m so glad I went. Some of the student work was exceptional and all of it was authentic. Each piece revealed a bit about the artists and the themes that moved them. And I was moved, heartened, nourished by all that they offered. I spoke with two young women I remember teaching in 4th and 5th grade and congratulated both of them specifically on their particular treatment of women in their art. These young people know some things.
My slice for today is longer than usual but nearly done. It may be time for another tea and to drop my shoulders; to sit back in a sloppy posture and breathe.