Two weeks. That seems manageable, especially when timed to follow our Spring Break. Two months. Now wait just a minute. This is a whole different story.
Of course, I wasn’t shocked. I follow the news more carefully than I did just two weeks ago. I watched the press conference announcing the extended closure of K-12 schools in Virginia, but when it hit me, it hit me like a ton of bricks. Because I am not a teacher. Communications professional, mom, wife, sister, daughter, friend, music lover and photography enthusiast…nope, that’s what I suspected. Teacher was not on that list. Until now.
Suddenly a million thoughts turned over in my mind at the speed of light. I began to grieve for things my daughter (and our family) would lose during these strange days that can feel very isolating at times. I began to mourn the loss of our routine and the trusted assurance that she was off to a fun day of learning with her friends as she waved goodbye to me and I began my normal day. And my heart breaks as my daughter’s five-year-old mind grapples with these same issues and tries to make sense of things that I struggle to understand myself. And then I question – am I even equipped for this? It’s so much to take in so quickly.
PAUSE. I take a breath. Yes, I can do this. And then I remember that I am not alone. I can still ask questions at parent-teacher conferences this week. I can reach out to my friends and colleagues at Grymes. I can share my ideas and thoughts with them and with other parents. Of course, we will get through this. We will learn together.
Another deep breath, as I piece together what tomorrow will look like. It may go just the way I envision, or more likely, it will not. I’ll let you know next week. Until then, it’s one day at a time. It’s comforting to know that whether we are teachers, lawyers, self-employed, or stay-at-home parents, we’re all in this together, as Grizzlies.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to Grymes faculty and staff during these times of remote learning. We may be learning remotely, but we’re still here for you.