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Family First

April 10, 2012

Today was my first real day back at school.  It was hard.  Really hard.  Attendance was low because of the Easter break and everyone was restless.  I expected that.  I thought I was ready for that.

But when 12th grade wouldn’t pay attention my fragile shell started cracking.  I didn’t yell.  I didn’t get mad.  I just stopped and looked at them sadly, pointing to the “20 Days to WAEC!” I’d written at the top of the board.  When ten minutes later we still weren’t moving I thought about walking out.  Not mad.  Just sad, tired, and not in the mood.

“My friends,” I said, “I bragged about my students in Monrovia, but right now you are making me very sad.  I am here for you but you don’t seem to care.  Ms. L is gone,” I continued, my voice cracking and tears building.  “You don’t think I want to be with my family too?  I am here because you are my family now.  I need you to take better care of me.”

Complete silence.

“I can continue?”

They nodded and a few people mumbled, “Surely.”  I finished the notes and went on to teach two equally frustrating 11th grade classes.  Just keep moving forward, girl, just keep moving forward.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Andrea Penn permalink
    April 28, 2012 10:12 pm

    I’m sorry stuff is so rough lately. I’m thinking and praying for you. I wish I could be there to give you a big hug…I’m sure you are doing a wonderful, incredible job 🙂

    Love and blessings to you,

    • April 28, 2012 11:22 pm

      Thanks for your support, Andrea. Anything happening to me totally pales in comparison, however, to what my students have gone through and are going through. They truly inspire me.

      Life will try to give you hard time wherever you are… it’s all in how you respond to it.

  2. Emily permalink
    April 29, 2012 3:19 am

    I am thinking of you, too, and thinking that you and your students are lucky to have one another, even if things are extremely difficult. I wish you strength and resilience.

    • April 29, 2012 11:00 pm

      Thanks, pandilla 🙂

      Half of them are working on applications to study in Costa Rica next year. They can’t believe they’d be learning Spanish! When I told my prefect they’d call him “Jorge” he almost died laughing. None of them could say it, but oh did I love hearing them try!

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