A sunrise is a time of rebirth. A moment of renewal, rejuvenation, and hope. A fresh start. It reconnects us to daylight, ourselves, and each other. It’s where light overtakes darkness and we begin again.
The first month of school has been a sort of sunrise for me and my career. I feel brand new. The immense joy I’ve experienced these past few weeks has filled my heart and also sent it racing with excitement. Reuniting with students, my classroom, and my colleagues has restored my faith in teaching and learning.
The vigor I’m moving with now is 16 months in the making. My energy levels have been intoxicating. I’m practically bursting. Most of my students think I’ve lost my mind or that I’m drinking too much coffee. But I can’t help it. My return to the classroom is a homecoming. It’s been too long. I’m finally healing and moving on from the hell that was remote learning. I’m back where I belong and all that was stolen from me is finally being returned.
I know schools are not going to close again because of Covid. Though I’ve been reassured, something deep down keeps telling me to hold on to this moment. To squeeze it tight, to cherish each class period as if the next day they’ll all be reduced to a Zoom link once again. After what I went through — after what we’ve all been through — nothing seems certain.
So that’s what I’ll do. Stay utterly present and savor every minute of every class and then go home tired. Tired not in a way that weighs me down, but instead in a way that lifts me up and fulfills me. Tired in a way that makes me feel alive. Because after so much darkness, after so much emptiness, I can finally see again. The sun is rising. It’s dawn, and the view is breathtaking.