A blessing for my students

 

Several of my students are in crisis. I feel almost false as I write about everything but them but, though my head is a-swirl with their situations, I cannot write about what is happening. Their stories are theirs; I cannot share them here. Even if I could, I wouldn’t know how to share because the pain, the hardness, it’s too much for me to process right now. I can support, act, think, but I can’t feel this all yet. It’s too much. I am spent, and I don’t know what to write. How do you slice someone else’s pain?


I keep thinking about the Irish blessings people wrote about on St. Patrick’s Day. If I cannot write their stories, perhaps I can write of my hopes instead. Maybe that will lift some of this weight. What can I offer these young people?

A teacher’s blessing

I wish for you…
the strength to continue to speak the truth and to believe that your truth matters;
the understanding that adults are neither always good, right or kind nor always mean, wrong or vindictive;
the ability to continue to believe that the world is generally good, even when that is not your current experience.

On your journey, may you find…
ideas that nourish you;
friends who support you;
dreams that propel you forward into the world.

May you see, as I see…
your friends, who hold you close and support you, even when you are unsure;
your family, who love you, even when you cannot believe this;
your self, who shines brightly, even when you feel unseen.

May the path that lies before you be smoothed by the choices you made today.
May the love that awaits you be deepened by the emotion you experience now.
May the adult you become be shaped by the child you are in this moment.

For all that you think you are broken, you carry within you our dream of the undiminished future.

Oh, my students! Tonight, I wish you peace.

 

slice-of-life_individual

 

Slice of Life, Day 22, March 2018

Thanks to Two Writing Teachers for this wonderful month of inspiration.

18 thoughts on “A blessing for my students

  1. These blessings are beautiful. What child wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end of this?

    I’m sorry so many of your students are in crisis. There are so many children dealing with tough issues in our schools. We want to help them all, but sometimes the solutions are beyond our ability to help because of our limited roles.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’d love to share this w/ students. There are so many lines I love that I can’t narrow my choice to one or two. Beautiful. Yesterday I wrote about a student’s struggle w/ anxiety. Rather, I asked the student to write something I could share on my blog. I hope it helps her to have her voice heard by other adults. I heard from another student who also struggles. I always think about how I present students when I write about them and seek their approval and permission first. I think each teacher’s situation is different and that our circumstances must guide us.

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    1. Your post yesterday gave me the courage to try to write last night. I know that at least one of my students would be fine if I wrote about her situation, but in the end, I couldn’t figure out how to. I realized that right now it is more about my struggle to help and less about their particular difficulties (though: hospitals, rehab, police, abusive relationships, on top of regular old anxiety, eating disorders, depression, plus LD struggles and just plain stress. It’s been a lot.) This week I actually checked to see if it was a full moon or something. Maybe the equinox? Anyway, I’d be delighted if you want to share this with your students. And thanks for giving me courage.

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  3. Oh, these beautiful blessings make my heart ache. It is so hard to carry their stories sometimes, right? I have a really hard time with that. Sometimes I write about my students in my writers notebook, knowing that I will not be able to share their stories or situations.

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      1. I try to help them understand that even when things are not going well that they have control over how they show up. And to keep going, even when it is really hard.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. So, so beautiful. These are the lines that strike me most: “see … your self, who shines brightly, even when you feel unseen” and “For all that you think you are broken, you carry within you our dream of the undiminished future.” I know they feel unseen sometimes, maybe a lot, when they’re in crisis. The world seems to be about everything but them. What a viral reminder, that they carry great value to the world and the future. There’s such power in your blessing. Prayers for strength, hope, perseverance, and positive resolutions for these young ones.

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  5. I think you can add to your blessing for your students-“May you have teachers who care, who feel your struggles and suffer your struggles, and use their heart to see you.” You are a blessing to your students, Amanda. You see beyond their struggles and hope that they will be better for them. Thank you for sharing this beautiful, hope-filled slice.

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  6. This is so spot on… “ability to continue to believe that the world is generally good, even when that is not your current experience.” I hope you shared this blessing with them because it’s beautifully written. I especially love “May the path that lies before you be smoothed by the choices you made today.”

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  7. Not that I harbor any anger toward them, but I so wish that one of my daughter’s teachers had written these words to my 17-year-old when she was in crisis. Then, too, I wish I’d written them. I don’t know that it would have been enough, but it certainly wouldn’t have hurt. I love this line: “May the adult you become be shaped by the child you are in this moment.” Some Wish, as Charlotte might say.
    I too, am dealing with a student (ten years old!) who is really struggling. It’s all I’m thinking about, but I’m writing about something else.

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