Today was the first day of school with kids!
The kids I teach were scheduled into the "general population" to start the year, so I didn't have too many students today. That gave me a chance to help with students who didn't know where to go this morning and to go over my rosters and visit with teachers to see who I was *supposed* to have and who had actually shown up. In all, it was a pretty productive day.
Someone brought me a student early this morning, with the thought in the back of their head that she was "special". Indeed, she seemed to be to me. Monotone answers. Very agitated and poking away at the keyboard of a computer that was not on. Yelling at the intercom to "shut up, shut up, shut up". (I feel the same way sometimes.) They were afraid to put her with the regular kids, for fear she would "blow" and it just wouldn't be pretty. She told me that she couldn't be in big classes, because they get loud, and it just ticks her off. She mentioned that she had taken her meds this morning and they help her with her panic attacks. She said she gets a lot of panic attacks. I asked her what I should do if she has a panic attack. She said, "Hold me down." Ummmm... I don't think so. I asked if she would hurt me. She said, "Maybe...."
She said she was hungry, so we went to the cafeteria and one of the nice ladies pulled out a piece of toast with cheese and sausage for her to eat. After that, life seemed to improve for her. :-) Word came that there were no records of her getting "special" services, so she will be in a regular class. The counselors were rather overwhelmed, though, so she stayed with me the rest of the day. I enjoyed her, and I think she had a good day. No panic attacks.
My second shadow was very sweet, but much lower functioning than the children that I usually teach. Her mother is still holding out hope that she will get a high school diploma. Sixth grade. First grade skills. High school diploma - probably not.
Many good things have happened in the last week. Prayers have been answered, but one thorn still remains. There is one person (in a position of authority) who asks seemingly innocent questions, but then adds in comments and innuendos that seem to imply that I am not doing my job. I am not usually easily offended - 20+ years of teaching middle schoolers have taken care of that. But this just seems to be an ongoing thing. A feeling that I am under a microscope. A new teacher that I have known for exactly one day commented on it as we left, so I know that it's not my imagination.
As I was replaying the events in my head tonight, my thought was, "I don't need this @#$%." Really, I am pretty easy-going, and can get along with almost anyone. But then another voice says, "Maybe you DO need this." God does tend to send us what we NEED. I'm not sure why He would think that I need this, but I do know that He has good plans. I know God knows what God is doing, even when I don't.
Also playing in my head are the meditations from the Seven Sorrows Rosary. Meditations about accepting the suffering God deems it necessary to send our way and about the value suffering has when it is known only to God. In other words, suck it up, offer it up, and shut up. And so maybe that will be my focus. Instead of running to my co-worker and saying, "Guess what she wanted to know now?", I will just go on with my business. <<Say only the good that needs to be said.>> Perhaps, too, there is something to be said for treating enemies kindly. Romans 12: 17-21 likens it to "heaping burning coals upon their heads." I won't lie. There would be a certain amount of satisfaction in that....
Pray for me.
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