The power of rest…
Today I had to stay home with Berklee since she has had strep all week and it was my turn. She is one person who can make my heart melt just by a look. Even though she is sick and running 101.6º fever, she still wants to run and play. The morning found me putting together this puzzle with her, then promptly tearing it down. After another hour of playing with @trianglemancsd’s turtles, it was snuggle time. She needed some down time, but it wasn’t in bed or in her beanbag- it was on my lap. I love it when the kids want to just sit with me and relax, so I was definitely up for this. The thing that made it all the better was when she said randomly while watching Bubble Guppies; “Daddy, I love you.”
The rest of the day was a balance between play and rest, with each activity and rest explicitly involving me. It made me really think about my students. How many of them are able to get this type of need filled on a daily basis? Or even fulfilled on a voluntary basis?
Kids need attention, need to feel loved and safe. They need to feel like they belong. All of these things are missing in my student’s lives. Many have parents who had them too young- parents who still have needs they need met and have no idea how to meet those of their kids. I have students who’s parents are working so many jobs to make ends meet that they only see them 2-3 hours a day. How can they have a positive relationship with their parents? How can parents be truly invested in their child’s life, education? Some of my students do have their parents home-but that comes with a cost. Their parents are strung out on something, and could care less who is around them unless they have some score.
When I think on those situations, my heart breaks for these kids. How can I as a teacher support them? I am not their parents but how can I effectively fulfill some of their basic needs so they can focus on school? I am not sure I will ever fully answer those questions, but I do what I can.
At the end of the year, when things are stressed by testing and end of year jitters, I know I really needed this day to relax and recharge. Berklee is not the only one who benefited from this day of rest- she gave back to me as much as I gave her.