This week has seemed like it was at least a month long. It was the hardest and most heartbreaking week of my life.
I debated on whether or not to share this on my blog, but I decided that teachers are the most loving, caring community. I know that no matter what we are there for each other and support each other through thick and thin.
On Saturday night, very late, one of my co-workers got a hold of me asking if I had our principal's phone number. (We have a new principal this year so not all of us had her cell number yet) I told her I did not.
Then the shock of my life came. She said, "Well I have some sad news to share, Jennifer passed away tonight." I had to read that sentence at least five times before it sunk in. My heart was breaking and tears were streaming down my face.
Jennifer was our resource teacher, or special education teacher. Her passing has created a huge hole in the heart of our school.
I don't think you need me to share the details of my week. I went through the motions of teaching but didn't really feel like I was there.
Instead today, I just want to remember Jennifer. She was the most kind, most gentle, most patient person I have ever met. She always thought of her students first. She would do anything to help anyone who needed it. She loved to wear long, warm sweaters. Her son was the light of her life.
A couple years ago, I had a student who was severe special needs. Jennifer never once complained about the extra things she and I had to do with this student. Never once complained about the issues we faced daily. Instead, she would come and get this little pumpkin from my room with a smile on her face each day.
That is how I will remember Jennifer. As the sweet, caring teacher who loved to wear her long sweaters and always smiled at everyone she passed in the hallway.
I am thankful to my fellow co-workers in my building because without each other I don't think we would have made it through this week. I am also extremely thankful to our school counselor for bringing in a grief counselor so that we could start our healing process.
Thank you for letting me share my story with you and keep Jennifer's memory alive.