Today, I took the day off. Unapologetically. This personal day was more to catch up to the tons of paperwork I have to take care of, including chapters for books, progress reports, awards for my students, and getting my mind right. The irony that I’d be working from home and actually being more productive from here than over at the school doesn’t pass me by. I knew I need it, and in order for me to stay on top of my game, I needed this day to replenish and make things happen.
Yet, this whole week, as I’ve reflected on my profession, I know that this is my calling. I’m still Mr. Vilson moreso than Jose at any given moment. I still want to tell people to stop chewing gum in front of me. I still look at license plates and birthdates and try to see if they’re divisible by 3. I still have tons of ideas bubbling in my head, inspirational and motivating things to tell my students to get the best out of them. Anything that may make me sharper as a teacher. For what I lack in organization, I more than make up for in creativity.
And tomorrow, when I look at what my students are doing, I hope to see wonderful projects from my students that encompass both their academic understanding and capabilities and their creativity. Even when I’m absent, I’m worried about what they’re up to in my classroom. Sometimes, those dumb worksheets just aren’t enough for me. I’m hungry for more, not just for me, but for them. Even with the constant beatdown of the fluctuations in their comportment, I can’t let any of this get me down.
I love teaching.
And I don’t want anything to stop me.
Jose, who wants to leave you with your own image …