It’s bittersweet, the last day at my first full-time salaried job. Over the past three years I have learned so much, grown so much.
Since I haven’t really chronicled my journey over the past three years, this will be the short and sweet version, which for me, being brief is difficult at times.
I had just graduated, was going home for my college graduation party. Arrived home, received a phone call about a job interview I had applied for down south. Essentially, they wanted to meet me in person and because I could be called for Jury Duty, which I was overly excited about, meant that I was only available on that Friday. Cue the 4 hour drive that I made down south and back in 24 hours in order to interview for the job.
Within 2 hours of this interview, I think I mean it was 3 years ago now, I received the phone call telling me they’ve chosen me for the job! (I had pulled over and was freaking out, after said phone call of course.)
Year 1 – Straight out of College
- Working with two different kiddos, one in first grade and one in kindergarten. I have a video of myself Signing The Pledge of Allegiance. The student was next to me and at the end I accidentally, whilst Signing “Signed my glasses off my face.” The student laughs, as does the entire kindergarten class, and picks up my glasses and places them back on my face, behind me ears. That is by far, my favorite year 1 memory.
Worst/Most Embarrassing Memory:
- Proving I could run in wedges, we will just leave it at that.
Annual Take Away:
- Embrace your new surroundings and all the experiences that come with it. Be the bigger person, the bigger professional in this case.
Year 2 – In the Trenches
- Halloween, dressing up with my student, I dressed up as a Cat.
Most Difficult Challenge:
- Navigating the professional waters of being one in a team working for my student.
Annual Take Away:
- Keep on Keeping On
Year 3 – Bittersweet
This year was full of so many emotions, at the beginning of the year I didn’t realize that this year would be my last. However, by the last 6 months of school I DID know I was leaving and it was the most difficult 6 months working with my student whom we didn’t plan to tell until the last week of school.
By this time, I say my student or my child to which my friend often reminded me not to say because we did not in fact have a child. If we did, I stayed pretty thin all through it. JUST JOKING. The last six months, especially when all paperwork with the new job was finalized, I hugged my student a little tighter maybe doted on her a little more as the year was coming to a close.
Any of my co-workers will tell you, I love this student as if she was my own. I spent 6.5 hours of the school day, ALL day with the exception of lunch with her for approximately 3 years. If you don’t expect a bond to grow in that time, I’m not sure how to explain the bond my student and I share.
I will miss my co-workers, I will miss the school I have come to love, the faces that have so graciously accepted me into their community, but most of all I will miss the students that I worked with for three years.
“Even as a Teacher Assistant,
I will always consider her my first student.”