Typically, I don’t greet my annual supervisory bus trek on the last day of school with much anticipation. But I couldn’t wait to jump on the bus and mingle with the kids yesterday–after all, it meant the official close to the 2009-2010 school year, a year that ranks in the bottom three of my entire professional career.
Early on, this year brought personal loss, political uproar, and work-related controversy. And that was just September. The rest of the year spun by with an office move and ongoing financial worries for the district thrown in for good measure. I had unforeseen conflict with parents regarding both a program and a school I care personally, as well as professionally, about and learned once again how hard it is to walk the line between district administrator and mother.
Later this year, the ugly condition of state finances finally culminated in our announcing layoffs earlier this month. Good people lost their jobs, and my role in those decisions leaves me feeling both grateful for continuing employment and sick to my stomach over not saving more positions.
Stepping back, I realize good things did happen this year. Professionally, I made significant strides in our efforts to launch two new language immersion programs in the district and gained official admission to the doctoral program. On the home front, our newly-minted driver in the family is enjoying her new freedom, and I’m enjoying the fact that she’s both responsible behind the wheel and a great back-up carpooler. DD2 literally danced through 8th grade on the school dance team while seeming to have just as smooth a ride academically. Her decision to return to the tumbling roots that earned her the former name “Gym Girl” led to a successful run for the cheer squad at the end of the year. I’m slowly adjusting to my new “cheer mom” status, but she’s loving the workouts and the prospect of some sideline time this coming year. Soccer Boy had one of the best years of his school career–coming into his own both academically and socially. I think I may have a budding actor on my hands!
In light of all that, on this first official day of my “summer” I’ve decided to put my own personal annus horribilus behind me. And, while I’ll certainly have plenty to keep me busy in the office this summer, I’m going to concentrate on the inherent joy this season brings. There are snow cones, dips in the pool, and time spent relaxing with family in my future. It couldn’t come at a better time.