Blue Suede Shoes

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Nov 11 2012

The Anniversary…

Three years ago yesterday, I was accepted to Teach For America in Memphis. I’ll never forget the euphoric relief I felt when I finally checked my e-mail that evening. I’d had the back-up plan of law school, but let’s be honest, who wants to use a back-up plan? I remember where I was (the empty penthouse of my building); who I was talking to (Mike); what I did right after (e-mail friends and mentors who’d supported me on the years-long quest of getting into the corps). These things remain vivid to me because that e-mail changed my life, and I knew even then that it would.

Now, 1,000 miles away, I miss teaching and Memphis more than I expected. (And believe me, I expected to miss them a lot.) I miss my kids. I miss my house. I miss my roommates. I miss being (or just feeling?)┬ácompetent, even good, at something. At this point, I’ll take even feeling competent. I mean, [I think] I like law school, but there’s so much uncertainty, and I hate that. At least when I was teaching, I could tell immediately when I was bombing…

I try to stay involved with outreach to prospective corps members and accepted corps members, and they ask great questions, but I could never describe in words what their two years (or more) will be for them. Words like “fulfilling” and “challenging” – what do they really mean? There is so much to share: anecdotes, heartwarming moments, awful days that I look back on now and just laugh. Nothing prepares you for the pride and disappointment, the joy and the frustration, of being a teacher. Three years ago, I had no idea what I was getting into, but not a day has passed that I’m sorry I got into it.

2 Responses

  1. Rashana

    I really enjoyed reading your post and would like to say you are always welcome in Memphis. Happy Anniversary and best wishes in law school!

    • Thank you! In a couple months, I plan to book a flight back to Memphis in May, and I don’t think that will be my only return trip. :-)

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