Hello, dear heart!
What a year, right? It was tough. It was super tough. You said on more than one occasion that it was the hardest school year of your 17-year career. And yet, here you are. You made it. In fact, you didn't just "make it" - you thrived. You surrounded yourself with an incredible support system, really paid attention to your needs, and prioritized taking care of yourself. You deserve to celebrate yourself. And you deserve to thank yourself. You gave 100% every day. 100% of your heart, your brain, your patience, your empathy, your creativity. Thank you for sharing your Light. It is so bright, and it does make a difference.
In September, you had no idea what was coming your way - students literally climbing the furniture, throwing chairs, scratching, kicking, and hitting you. The epic, explosive crying. The total chaos, the lack of any logic, needing to be in ten different places at once, putting out one fire after another, sore muscles and breaking a sweat just trying to safely return these babies to their homes. Holding boundaries even when you're exhausted. Digging as deep as you can to honor feelings when you really just want their expression to stop.
And yet, look at how far these students came with your love and guidance. They grew to understand that they could trust you - that you would be a safe place in the storm of being new to the world. That they are valuable, worthy of being truly seen and heard. They learned of their power - you allowed them to try, to struggle, and to persevere. You gave them tools to both give and receive love from others, to experience one of the great joys in life by forming friendships. You modeled taking good care of yourself so that they know it's ok for them to do the same. You welcomed the wildness, the wackiness, the play and imagination, all without ever losing your place as the calm center in the eye of the storm. You are the tether between home and the world - what a powerful, sacred role that is. Thank you for honoring and delighting in it.
Who knows what next year will bring - or tomorrow, for that matter. But bring along that expansive, adventurous, reverent heart of yours. And trust that your work is some of the most important work in the world.