Since I didn’t technically post on Monday, and one of my kids said that I have to post today to make up for it, I will. I don’t have a recipe for you all today, but this one is more about how I’ve heard that having gratitude leads to a healthier and happier life. Apparently when you’re feeling grateful, you generate and focus on positive emotions such as love, joy, and satisfaction (which can even boost your mood if done often enough according to Psychology Today)
That’s what this post is about, I suppose. It’s about me embracing the ‘happier life’ by being grateful for having known my kids, taught them, and learned from them. Today was the last day of school, and I think I’m suffering from a little bit of heartbreak (as I do every year), so why not channel that into something positive?
As many of you know, I’m a teacher. Even though media and the world might not always perceive teachers in a positive light or with the proper amount of respect, I still love my job. Why, you may ask? No, it’s not because I have a summer, and it’s not because of the high salary either (get the joke?). It’s most definitely because of the kids and all of the wonderful relationships I get to have and foster every year. And to be honest, the relationship that a teacher builds with their students in a classroom community is something that most people don’t understand unless they are or have been a teacher.
Every year I get to begin with the bubbling excitement of meeting thirty something new little faces, and I have the opportunity to learn, grow, and become a better person with them. I get to build a little family of my own and fall in love every single year with a brand new group of kids. And for that year and for the rest of my life, they’ll be “my kids” even if they’re not really “my kids”. I worry about them and what will become of them when they’re older (some more than others). I love it when they’re carefree and happy, am proud when they are kind to one another or working hard, am there for them if they ever need a band-aid or a person to talk to, think of them whenever I see something that reminds me of them, and believe in them with all my heart. It’s a rewarding feeling getting to come to work, pour every ounce of myself into these kids, and see their progress throughout the year.
But what I’ve realized this year and the year before that is that I probably learn from my kids as much as they learn from me, if not more. They’ve surprised me with all of the things that they’re capable of, and have shown me what it’s like to be kind, to forgive, to be considerate, and to accept different people. They’ve shown me what it’s like to be selfless and to have courage, whether it’s presenting a project in front of other people or standing up for what’s right. They motivate me and inspire me with their creativity, kindness, positivity, hard work, and bright/spunky personalities. They push me to be a more out of the box thinker, more patient, more courageous, more creative, and to work harder. I’m so grateful to have gotten the chance to be impacted by these important ‘little’ people and that I got to be a part of their lives. Today I’m grateful for my kiddos from this year and all that they’ve done for me and the world. And hey, it sure feels good to be grateful!
What are you grateful for?