The school year is officially over. Just two days of post planning left and we are free for summer break.
My first year of teaching is finished.
I am experiencing a huge amount of emotions over the completion of this year: excitement, relief, happiness, pride, but also sadness, and a bit of loss.
Excitement, happiness, and pride that my students all passed and are being promoted to second grade.
Relief from the stress of getting my teacher plans and organizational routines together.
Sadness and loss over the fact that it's well and truly over. It's been an amazing first year full of trials, triumphs, and trying new things. I worked so hard to get here and to give myself over to the experience that I find myself a bit unsure of myself now that I'm not pushing forward so intensely. I am also finding that my 26 students completely stole my heart this year and letting them go means sending pieces of my heart with them. It's a new and bittersweet feeling.
I'll admit, there are definitely things I would change about this past year and there are certainly things I wish I had done better. Now that there aren't new lessons to plan or kids and materials to organize for the immediate future, I find myself being quite reflective over the experience.
I also find myself unable to sleep for all the thoughts of next year and improvements to be made swirling around in my mind. Although I know I performed well and met or exceeded the expectations of others, I wouldn't be acting like myself if I wasn't looking for ways to do more or be better than I was.
And it isn't coming from a place of negativity. I think, more than anything, it comes from an inability to let go of this thing I care about so much. This is what happens, I guess, when you are lucky enough to live your passion. It completely consumes you every minute of every day whether you want it to or not.
To all the teachers partying over the end of the school year: Can one of you teach me to relax? My relaxation setting seems to be malfunctioning. :)