Friday was my first day volunteering at Davenport Public School, where last year’s Grade 6’s at South Dorchester School now go. Those are the kids I love. We shared so many awesome moments.
After signing in at 8:45, I walked out to the schoolyard. As I rounded a corner of fhe building, I wondered if any children would come say hi. The answer? About ten of them! I was so happy. Since it’s now Grade 7, I didn’t expect any hugs to come my way, and my expectations were met. And that’s fine.
What did land on me were many smiles, which changed to some frowns when I told them that two of the three Grade 7 teachers had said yes to me volunteering. There was great sadness on the faces from the third class. I told them that I was sorry that I wouldn’t be in their classroom but inside me young sorrow created senior sorrow.
A day later, as painful as that moment was for me, I’m seeing more deeply that I’m important to many of those 12-year old souls. I am humbled and privileged that this is so. And I am blessed to have touched these kids, and to be revered in return.
In the classroom, the teacher let me participate in a class discussion about how you shouldn’t believe everything you read on the Internet. I even got to share with the kids about my swallowing of everything I read in high school textbooks, including the wonders of Canadian democracy. Only years later did I learn that women weren’t allowed.to vote until 1921.
The teacher had some very cool ideas about writing, such as the rhythm of grouping phrases in threes. And I got to help a special needs kid with his wordsmithing. Plus I looked around and often made eye contact with young folks I care deeply about. Talk about dying and going to heaven.
It feels like the gods are smiling on me these days. I know Jody is. Thank you, my dear.