September 01, 2011

Why I Keep Playing With Kindergartners

Photo Credit: Jessica Miller
On the first day of my first year as a Kindergarten EA, I was sent outside with the class while the teacher finished prepping for the rest of that long day. I was wearing my long white flowy skirt (I know...white and Kinders...*shrug *) and holding hands with two little girls.

"Hey you guys! Let's play Duck, Duck, Goose," I said, and the kids cheered.
Then a tiny hand tugged at mine and when I looked down, two blue eyes were gazing up at me. "We should play Duck, Duck, Swan, and you could be the swan," she said, very seriously.

I haven't needed to question my decision to go into education since that day.

It's been a long year. No, it's been a really long 6 years. I guess I'm a grown-up now, because broken friendships and mean people have finally left their mark and I'm more cynical and jaded than I ever really wanted to be. I was agonizing about this to my dear Best the other day.

"I'm a freak," I said, "why have so many people treated me this way? How do people just walk away from people they seemed to care about and never look back?" My Best is wise (which is why I married him of course).

"You're not the only one. Everyone has the kind of broken friendships that hurt and will never make sense to them. That's just human. You're not a freak. You're just acquainted with the real world now."

Both things are true. I am more cynical than I ever wanted to be, because a lot of people are meaner and more selfish than they really need to be. Bleh.  And, it's true that I'm not the only one who has been on the crummy end of selfish decisions. People everywhere know what this feels like. But I don't want to live jaded. I'm determined to live into beautiful, into kindness, into selflessness. And that's why I keep hanging out with Kindergartners.

They tell me I'm pretty. They ask me if I could teach them how to do something. They want me to swing with them. They listen if I have a story to tell. They want me to like what they like and not just because it would give them a higher number on their Facebook friends list.

Kinders are the real deal, my friends. These are the people I aspire to be like.
School starts in 5 days. Today I signed up to do the Kindergarten Tours where I show them where the bathroom is and introduce them to the nice office lady who has the band-aids.


1 comment:

  1. Miss Jenn,
    Not sure if I have ever told you this but you are a sweet, and precious gal.
    Love ya,


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