I see you. I see you because I am you. We both know there is nothing in this world that can so completely change your entire being on a primal level than becoming a mother. It stirs the depths of your soul, awakens deep seeded fears, consumes your every waking thought, and causes your heart to feel so full it could burst at any given second. Although we have never met, we share this unspoken bond of motherhood.
This month, you will appear at the doorway of my classroom. As our eyes meet, and I extend my hand to greet you, we will each smile politely while exchanging pleasantries. You will ask me a few logistical questions about my classroom, and I will provide details on school policies. I will then tell you that I look forward to teaching your child and walk you to the door. As you walk away, I will have to catch my breath to control the desire to call you back.
There are so many things that I will never have the chance to tell you. There are so many promises that I want to make to you. My role in your child’s life is one I do not take lightly. I fully understand the enormous influence I have on the kids’ day-to-day lives as well as their futures. I know firsthand the amount of trust needed to hand over the most precious being in your life to me, a seemingly perfect stranger. Thank you. I assure you that I will not let you down.
Please know that I promise to never forget that this child is your miracle. I will never lose sight of the years of infertility you overcame to conceive, the lengthy and emotionally trying adoption process, or the terrifying high risk pregnancy that has become a part of your story. I will always be sensitive to the months that you agonized over the delay in your child’s first steps or stayed up into the early morning hours researching and worrying about his or her development.
Dear Mama, I promise that I will love and protect your child as my own. I know you spent the better part of this summer with knots in your stomach, praying that your child would be placed with a teacher who would perfectly meet his or her needs. I assure you that I will answer that call, serving as a teacher, nurse, cheerleader, coach, counselor, and friend. Together, we will navigate this scary world, and I will serve as your child’s safe place away from home.
I know that no matter how old, this sweet child will always be your baby. I will adore his or her unique quirks and adorable personalities and appreciate your kid for exactly who he or she is. I will notice the way his nose wrinkles up when he laughs, or the way she get louder and louder and can’t seem to contain herself when telling an exciting story. I will spot the tears before they fall and will do everything in my power to soften their landing. Together, you and I will beam with pride, eyes full of joyous tears, when your child reads his or her first book, finally figure out that tricky math strategy, or make a long awaited first friend on the playground.
You see, the truth is that your child and I will spend this year learning from one another. Your child will teach me irreplaceable lessons about life, growth, and love. I will end this school year a better person for having known your child. I will always remember that the little things are the big things. Thank you for sharing them with me.
Your Child’s Teacher