Saturday, October 4, 2014
It started off as a typical Friday. I had to present at an 8:15 faculty meeting, I was off to an early start, but forgot some ice cream sandwiches I promised my students. I met Scott halfway from home, and then went on my way, thinking that would be the biggest setback of the day.
Pulling in to the school parking lot, I notice that familiar vibration of a text on my cell. It's from Ignatius. Was I coming to the Assembly at 9:00? This morning. Not just an assembly, the Assembly.
Here's what I have not known by being tethered to a classroom for the four years of high school: the Assembly on the Friday of Homecoming is a pretty big deal.
Ignorant of the full breadth of the situation, I receive an almost simultaneous call from my husband. Neither one of us was able to make a 9:00 Assembly. I call and explain this to Ignatius, who understands. He thought I knew about the Assembly through the strings of communication coming from the school. None really addressed the important nature of this. I figured that all the hoopla would be taking place at tonight's football game.
I then text my buddy and CCHS teacher, Ann, while basically wallowing in self-deprecation. Meanwhile, I am getting ready to present, (badly) holding back tears that come from that deep place in the psyche of every teacher-mom. Work interferes. Again. For the millionth time in his seventeen years of life.
Ann texts me and lets me know that the Assembly starts at 10. My principal insists that I leave my class in the capable hands of my aide, a retired teacher who is more than capable and willing to take the helm. Good thing, as my next text was going to be to ask Ann to stand in for me!
I present my information to my colleagues, we finish the meeting, and I scurry off to change out of my Irving spirit wear and into my Assembly clothes. I make it to CCHS with plenty of time to spare.
Upon arrival, I realize that the Assembly includes every senior in an activity in the fall being called to the front of the school-filled auditorium to present his/her mother with a rather large mum. One by one. So that my absence would have been brutally obvious, as it was for a few moms that could not make it.
The Assembly comes to a close after a motivating alumnus conveys a message of students being concerned with "who" they are rather than being defined by "what" they are. I return to my classroom to see the students working quietly on a math assessment, and Gigi, my colleague, happily relaying to me how nice it was to "teach" again.
The calmer end of my day allows me to reflect on the many parts of today that grew from chaos into grateful serendipity: the kind guidance of colleagues who reminded me of where my head, heart, and body needed to be; the easy-going son who was willing to go with whatever reality he was handed, knowing that the communication breakdown could have been avoided; the placement of a wonderful friend in my son's school, his guardian angel for 4 years; the opportunity to rely on someone else, not knowing that my need was, in turn, fulfilling her need. There is, indeed, a reason and time for every purpose under heaven.