Even if today wasn’t mother’s day I would still owe my mom a huge thank you for all of her help cutting mathematical stencils for my students this week. My kids LOVED their geometry t-shirts and it was mainly because my mom did such a fantastic job designing the project and teaching them how to use fabric paint.
It’s more than just this though.
When my mom came to my class last week I thought back to the time that she’d come to my class my first year teaching to deliver a talk on achieving your dreams to a group of freshman who were statistically quite likely to drop out of high school. I struggled to get them to listen to me long enough to teach them mathematics and my life seemed out of control. Having her come give a talk meant one day where all I would have to do is sit and give the teacher eye to students who were disrespecting my mom. Even my first year however the students had enough respect to listen attentively to my mom.
She did a lot more than save me from one more day of teaching. She listened to me for hours and hours as I cried, got angry, celebrated and laughed and the joy and pain of teaching. She didn’t give up on me when I gave up on myself and helped me process criticism and failure. She listened to me as I sorted out my life path this year and edited my graduate school essays. She bought me a really pretty dress when I felt too out of shape and stressed out to be beautiful and took me to a concert.
When she came this year the kids were fantastic. I had great relationships with them and they listened to me and my mom and were very enthusiastic about what we were doing. I didn’t feel stressed out despite the fact that they had unwashable fabric paint one careless gesture away from redecorating my carpet. I don’t know if my mom could really compare and contrast the difference in my teaching but I could feel it. I don’t stress out about my job constantly anymore. I don’t have to mentally prepare myself for the rush of students at the beginning of class. Things roll off my back more easily. I’m more spontaneous, funnier(if you count math jokes), and happier. And I know I wouldn’t have made this much progress without my mom.
Thank you! I love you!
Happy Mother’s Day!