Slice of Life: Inside Voices

Week six. The beginning. Still.
I feel like I should be further along. But I’m not. Yet.

After class, I sat and stared. Shell-shocked.  I thought of my first years of teaching when I cried at lunchtime. After so many years of teaching, surely I shouldn’t be in the same spot.

I recharged the devices, solved a few tech issues. Felt less incapable. Rephrase that, more capable. Reposition, rethink. Learning is a tough gift to give and receive.

The door opened. “Hey, Mrs. Harmatz, I forgot to leave this with you.” She handed me her reader’s notebook.

I forgot. She remembered. It must have mattered.

Driving home, I thought I can’t slice. There’s nothing I want to say. Out loud.

Nursing my wounds, I ventured to student writing.  Their sweet and silly all-alone voices came through and brought me back. Unwittingly I went to a place of hope.

In a large classroom of big kids, it’s hard to hear what’s inside. It’s not the voice they show to the world. The out loud voices are different. It’s the inside voice that is aching to get out. To be heard. They break my heart and make me smile. Who we appear to be in context is not always who we are.  It’s my job to honor that inside voice. To hear it and bring it out.

Writing is a gift. I’m glad I sliced.

Thank you, Two Writing Teachers for a place to share our inside voices, that remind us why we are here. Read more slices here.