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Ramblings from a Southern liberal, Boomer, single parent, grandmother, reunited birthmother, cancer survivor, pop-culture observer, retired teacher

Most dramatic lymphoma posts are from June 2002 - February 2003 archives.

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The Waking

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I cannot go.

We think by feeling. What is there to know?
I hear my being dance from ear to ear.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Of those so close beside me, which are you?
God bless the Ground! I shall walk softly there,
And learn by going where I have to go.

Light takes the Tree, but who can tell us how?
The lowly worm climbs up a winding stair;
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Great Nature has another thing to do
To you and me; so take the lively air,
And, lovely, learn by going where to go.

This shaking keeps me steady. I should know.
What falls away is always. And is near.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I learn by going where I have to go.

--Theodore Roethke


Joy's Updates - Straight from the Horse's Mouth.
Monday, July 24, 2006  
Euphoria 2

This is the second fall school has started without me and the first full year of retirement. I've noticed that the euphoria is exponential. I thought about my friends spending this week in in-service and know what they are experiencing. Then after all the speeches, meetings, and motivational speakers, they get ready to meet their students for the next year. All the preparation, anticipation, sleepless nights, and anxiety are a matter of course. They have new literature books for the English classes, new teachers, and old friends waiting for them. There will be countless papers to grade, announcements to hear, names to memorize, desks to straighten, deadlines to meet, bells to ring, and so much talking. Some of it doesn't change but then it's never the same either. Rough calculations estimate that I've taught over 6,000 students during my 40-year career (37 in Dickson County, 3 in North Charleston, SC, as well as GED classes, homebound students, course recovery, Watkins College, and some private art classes). Now you know why it's not a good idea for former students to say, "Remember me?" when it's been so long since I taught them and they've changed so much.

So even though I know what teachers are experiencing now, I'm so glad I'm not there with them. I love it when school starts without me!

When my college roommate, her husband, and I were reminiscing Saturday night, I thought about choices we made then. All of us spent our professional lives in education. Barb taught elementary school and John was an elementary school principal in Paducah, KY. We're all retired now. During the conversation we mentioned this guy I dated my junior year and how I should have married him. Then I started thinking about how my life would have been different if I'd done that or gone to New York to try to be an actress and realized that not only my life would have altered but so would all these people who are part of my life now. Interesting about roads not taken, isn't it? I guess that's why that poem is so popular.

10:15:00 PM

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