I never thought I’d see the day where I would have to appear in court as a teacher. I don’t know why I never thought it would happen; I’m certainly not oblivious to some of the horrible things children, teens, and young adults are exposed to or involved in- however, the thought just never crossed my mind that I should ever have to be a witness in a case regarding a student. But today, it happened.
I remember when I was younger I had always toyed with the idea of being a lawyer. My dad always teased me that I’d be a good one because I’m loud and I like to argue. I remember thinking I’d be good at it; helping people get the things they wanted, needed, and/or deserved. I remember thinking I could make a difference.
My third grade teacher made me consider teaching. Her class was the most fun, I remember every moment in there fondly, and I went back every year through college to see her and help her. I don’t remember how old I was when I decided that teaching would be what I wanted to do, but I remember it was her who gave me the mind set to make that decision.
I wanted to make a difference in the lives of others, and I wanted to do it exploring, creating, singing, dancing, and loving. I wanted to laugh every day, be silly, express myself and let others express themselves; and I knew the best way to do that was to teach.
In that court room today, I knew I had made the right decision. I don’t think I have the heart, the stomach, the mind, or the soul to be a lawyer. Throughout my life I have realized a few very important characteristics about me- 1. I am sensitive 2. I am anxious and 3. I always feel the need to please people. I know myself and I know that I would have either A. failed at being a lawyer or B. failed at being myself.
Teaching allows me to be 99.9% myself (let’s be honest, I can’t not wear a bra to school nor can I drop the f bomb in front of my students). Walking out of the court house today I felt sad knowing that some of my students have to deal with situations like this, but I am eternally grateful that I have the opportunity to love them and care for them and create a fun and safe environment for them when they spend their days with me. Those reasons, and many more, are the reasons I am happy I am a teacher, not a lawyer.