Why We Teach

Teaching, in a broad general sense, is a career of faith. It is one in which those who are called have to be tenacious, caring, and able to build a foundation knowing we may never see the full fruits of our labor.

For most educators, we freely take the leap of faith. We live our lives believing we did everything we could for a student based on our skills at that time. We trust the next teacher to pick up where we left off in helping a student to their next level.

That is why when a student remembers us in their later years it means so much. That one small moment of connection and remembrance motivates us to continue doing our best with the skills we have gained.

I recently had one of those moments. One of my first students when I moved to New Mexico reached out to me. Over the years, I’ve run into her mom, so I knew of some of the happenings of her life, her accomplishments.

It was such a very pleasant surprise to hear from her directly recently. She asked for my address as she wanted to send me something. It was the announcement of her upcoming college graduation. My little first grader is all grown.

The announcement arrived this week. What she wrote on it was extremely touching. The kind of note that will cause me to feel good each time I see it on my bulletin board. Her words are also inspiring and reminds me of why I enjoyed being a classroom teacher and principal so much, and helps me realize it was time well spent.

For a teacher, an educator, one note, from one former student, the words written make everything an educator must endure in today’s world worth the leap of faith we take every day.

Thank you Delaney, and all of my former students who have crossed paths with me over the years. You’ve all touched my soul and I am the better for it.

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