For as long as I can remember August has been a month of pure joy. School supplies were the prominent display in almost every store. Just the smell of crayons sent a rush through my whole body. I've been known to buy crayons just to smell them and be taken back to that glorious feeling. New folders and binders - especially Trapper Keepers! - excited me beyond words. Put that together with shopping for new school clothes at McAlpins with Mom and it was almost too much emotion for one girl to stand. And there was still the prospect of going back to school and using all those supplies! I have loved school since I've been old enough to go.
Somehow this year has been different. Perhaps it was because, as a teacher, I started training in July - and I wasn't ready for summer to be over. Perhaps it was that I am just getting older and more tired! Perhaps it was that I don't get to shop for school supplies for myself anymore. Perhaps it was that I had to leave my family at home and go off to work. But I was certainly not nearly as excited to see boxes and binders, or even crayons for that matter. Didn't even shiver at the smell.
But that all changed today. One precious, exuberant, bouncing child changed it all. Today was orientation at my school for parents and kiddos. A young boy came up to a group of teachers I was talking with and smiled a smile that finally sent those shivers through my body. He boldly proclaimed that he was going to be a first grader. His enthusiasm, I feel quite sure, could be felt for miles. We realized quickly that I was blessed enough to be his teacher. All that old joy and excitement came back to me as he went through his school supplies one by one on the cafeteria table. He couldn't even wait to get to the room to show me!
Later, as I put away extra school supplies, I caught a whiff of crayons. I nearly cried. Once again, because of a sweet, sweet first grader they smelled delightful. Teaching is hard work. But the rewards are simply indescribable. Today it was without a doubt the best job in the world.