The lists haven't changed a bit. They sprinkle my desk like a colorful doughnut, neon pinks, greens, and blues; a "To Do" list on several, a "To Buy" list on others, a few quotes, and classroom codes and passwords.They cover my desk and remind me that I am perfectly organized and absolutely a big hot mess all in the same post-it note and at the beginning of a new year none the less.
There is so much to celebrate here. I love to see the faces of new students and old students peek in my room from time to time and their laughter reminds me that our relationships are the most valuable. Reminding me of former students who have pieces of my heart, who have moved on, some I will see again and others I will not. The time and energy put into a life will always have a piece. The more the time, the bigger the piece, and so it will be. Let me remember this for as long as I teach, or work with people.
It's been different this time, working with people that is. This school year has already proven the struggles will be different, the connections will be deeper, and the engagement desperate. As a Mrs. my students see me the same, just with a more phonetically challenging surname, yet I respond to any name these days. Others make this name-changing business much more difficult, as if I am no longer who I've always been, or need the same things as them, or dream of making a difference, too.
Marriage is wonderful, but still we need purpose, Jesus and people. Still we need family and friends. I'm learning and someday's I learn much more than I wanted. Someday's I need more grace than ever before. It's an incredibly humbling, and exciting thing, but never have a I felt more human, more uncovered, more in need of redemption, or more thankful for mercy. This perfectly organized hot mess of a girl still needs mercy to give and receive. It's been a while, but it's time.