End of Year Emotions

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cherry neuhaus

As a kid, I remember how challenging it was to transition each grade year to a new teacher – especially when I was leaving the good ones. My 2nd grade teacher, Ms. Milam, made a HUGE impact on my elementary school brain; she was simply one of the best. She was one of those teachers who made you feel loved and cared for, yet also encouraged you to do your best. She loved each of her students as her own; so much so, that she asked all of the girls my 2nd grade class that year to be in her wedding. I remember crying as that year came to a close. My 3rd grade teacher, Mrs. Peschel was amazing as well. She always made us laugh and gave the best hugs every morning. I never really enjoyed math (I was more of a bookworm), yet she was able to make numbers more fun for me as the year continued. It was definitely hard to leave her classroom at the end of that year, too. I was so grateful for each of of these teachers and am even Facebook friends with them still today.

Now that I’m a mom of a 1st grader, I’ve found myself having a bit of that same ache as this year comes to a close. Watching my daughter leave behind a classroom with close friends and a great teacher in place, old feelings are starting to resurface and I’m not sure how to handle it! Some of you may think this is silly, but I know for a fact, many of you get where this mama is coming from! Last year when my daughter started kindergarten, we were blessed with a wonderful teacher and it was hard to “let go”. Even when teacher selections came out for 1st grade and we got my husband’s 1st grade teacher (so cool, by the way!), I still had this uneasy feeling. I was so confused as to why I was unsettled. It seemed silly, but as I was internally processing, I realized it was just going to be different. A year seems like barely enough time to get acquainted with a teacher; new rules and guidelines, less parent interaction than in years past, and more was all scary. But as the year flies by, you look back and wonder why you ever had apprehension in the first place – especially when your child thinks their teacher hung the dang moon!

Change is hard. Yet, there is so much beauty that comes with change – you just have to be willing to look hard enough to find it. Be intentional to see the good and trust the process that your child will thrive as they enter a new year, each year. It’s good to be challenged with change; it provides growth opportunities for both parents and children as they enter into a new season of life. AND I must say, good teachers are hard to come by these days (which is another topic for another day), so I’m really soaking up all I can through my daughter’s amazing teachers so far. I know this may not always be the case but those moments will be a part of a different life lesson – but for now, I’m loving it.

Being a mom is tough but I never imagined transitioning at the end of year would bring such emotion. Hang in there, mamas! You’ve got this, even when you want that same teacher for your child, FOREVER! I hope each of you can find the good and soon be blessed with the right teacher your child who helps them make all the difference in the world. Thankfully, they ARE still out there!

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Natalie is a born and raised Texan originally from Kerrville, Texas who is a hill country girl at heart. She graduated from Texas Woman's University with her master's in Counseling and is in private practice at Waco Psychological Associates as a Licensed Professional Counselor. Natalie married a Baylor bear and is blessed with two sweet girls, Hadley and Rylanne. We also have a son, Calvin James in heaven who was born in March of 2018 and is held near and dear to our hearts, daily! We love calling Waco, home. In her spare time, she enjoys the outdoors, good music, anything sport-related (former soccer player here), and making memories with family and friends. Feel free to follow her on Instagram @natpaigejones

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