Warning: This story has no moral. There is no doubt about it whatsoever. I’m sure there could be a moral read into it, or many, but morals and themes belong in an entirely separate category of life right now. I was there, so I should know whether or not there was a moral, and there was not. This must be distinctly understood, or nothing wonderful can come of this story.
I have a particular student who I am sure has thought I was out to destroy his life for the vast majority of the world, and vice versa. He has literally spent months in detention because of me. He skips my class. For weeks he begged me to call his mama… so she could cuss me out. Cutest little dimple—made me smile every day—but one of the most disruptive critters I could’ve imagined. Another point that should not be misunderstood—he’s charming, but potentially out to destroy my life.
I’ve heard it was because he has attachment issues with women—that since he’s never really had a mother figure he just will do anything in the world to get female’s attention. I’ve also heard that it’s because I have serious troubles with classroom management. Either way, KP #3—have I mentioned? My classroom doesn’t function with him.
Anyway–with that out of the way, on to the best moment ever. He was sitting in morning detention this morning (I wonder how he got there? Oh wait. My class.) And we got to chatting about horses. He’s missed weeks of class to go riding, which secretly, I have to support. I really don’t remember the rest of the convo. All I know is that at approximately 4:15 this afternoon, I heard someone rat-tat-tatting on my window—and there he was—him and his horse. At this point of the story, you could be distracted by the fact that I live in a small enough town that my kid actually rode his horse to school, but that’s not the point this time (remember? there is no point.) So yes, I went out, and we chatted about horses, life, reading—and then, best day ever—he gave me a leg up (‘cause it’s been years since I’ve mounted a horse bareback—he’s never gonna let me live it down) and my life, for approximately the next 23 minutes, was basically perfect.
My child may have caught pneumonia. I probably destroyed my clothing. But for a few minutes, I got to be ME, chatting my kid about whether he really wanted to be a coal miner, or maybe, actually… a farrier? Sometimes I look at all those things that great TFA teachers do, and I feel pretty sucky. I look at people who love their lives and are good at what they do, and I think, what do I have to do to get there? I think of those teachers who have incredible turn-arounds with their kids, and I feel like that five minute moment I had with one of my kids might not matter in the long run…
But really, that’s flirting too much with a moral. The just plain fact of the matter is that my kid brought me a horse, and I got to ride it, no rules, no lawsuits, no ten best practices or key points.