Last June, I moved across the state of Missouri.
I was asked to take on an incredible role as a Mentor Teacher and Technology Integrationist in Kansas City. When I heard about this opportunity, I felt God was pulling at my heart to take this chance and to take the risk. “I always envisioned myself in another city, so why not try it now,” I thought.
I know from experience now that moving to a new city alone, while not knowing anything about how to get around, is one fast way to learn and grow COMPLETELY. New town. New workplace. New home. New roads to navigate. New insights. New everything!
My then-boyfriend and now fiance, Adam, supported my move and knew there was no stopping my passion for education. Smart guy! Traveling three and a half hours back and forth to see each other, while planning a wedding and still trying to see friends and family, has been tougher than I would ever admit. But, I would not change a thing.
Through this experience, I have a second family; My colleagues.
After staying at work this week until 7 p.m. and enjoying the time spent with my co-workers, while forgetting that clocks even exist, I finally left work. After driving back home, I messaged my mom to tell her how much I love the people I work with. She responded, with,
“I’m grateful for all of them since they have made it even nicer for you since you are away from Adam and away from where you grew up.”
My mom’s words brought tears to my eyes because she put to words what my heart was trying to express.
We often say as educators that students spend more time at home than at school; The same applies to us as adults. We spend more waking hours at work, with teachers and students than time spent doing anything else. For this reason, and many others, I am grateful that my colleagues are MORE than people I see at work. They are people that I CARE about, and people who care about me; Not just as fellow educators, but as humans first.
They take care of me. We take care of each other.
Just this week:
-A co-worker saw I needed another ice scraper, and she brought one into work to lend a hand.
-I was surprised this morning with my favorite diet soda waiting for me on my desk.
-I looked in my mailbox to find the sweetest card waiting for me.
-A colleague lovingly said she was my “second mom” and my “Kansas City mom.”
I have no words to describe the gratitude I feel for these exceptional individuals.
Thank you for making Kansas City the remarkable city it is. Thank you for risk-taking with me. Thank you for seeing my heart. And most importantly, thank you for loving me.
Here is to everyone who is reading this: Hug a co-worker. Be a family. Show your love. Say thank you to even the smallest acts that make an impact in your day-to-day life.
These days that we spend with each other are not just “school days,” the days are our LIVES. Let’s make them count and love each other UP.