Photo: Ali Flynn

Dear Teachers,

I hear you. I offer you empathy. I validate you.

You didn’t sign up for this.

You never thought you would teach a screen filled with missing gaps or a student appearing every now and then as cameras pop on and off.

You didn’t think you would have to find new tools to radiate your creative thoughts, passion, and enthusiasm through the online abyss.

You didn’t know how much you would miss engaging with your students. The simple hello passing by in the hall or the words of encouragement walking through the classroom door.

So many of you are going above and beyond, yet wondering if you are making a difference.

You didn’t sign up for this.

But now, as schools across the country are opening, I’m cheering you on.

I have tears of joy as you are now able to smile in person or give those simple yet profound words of encouragement while looking into the eyes of your students.

I have tears knowing this is where you are meant to be—in the classroom and nowhere else.

I have tears believing you can now fully share your knowledge, within the walls of your creative space, and the gifts you have been blessed with to pass on to others.

I have tears knowing you are filled up each day, through your love of learning while engaging academically and emotionally with your students.

I have tears for you.

For all of you who touch the lives of all of our children.

So as I sit pondering over the last year, it hasn’t been easy but thank you!

Thank you!

Thank you for all you have done for our children and your students.

This post originally appeared on Hang in there mama by Ali Flynn.
Feature image courtesy of iStock