Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Where Do They Go?

It's a disorienting thing when a relationship ends. Most of us have experienced losing a love, dumping a love or misplacing a love. What I find more unsettling is the end of a friendship. A change of some sort is usually at work when this happens. A move of the heart or of priorities, or simply moving on...and we're left with a bewildered sense of: What was that?

Every year, teachers become attached to their students. For good teachers, there is no way around it. In order to motivate that little brain, a meaningful relationship has to happen and then — whoosh — gone. Moving on.

This is the element I don't have down. I will always be lousy at good-byes.

For three days after The Shakespeare Club ends, I wander around the house weeping. Piles of plastic crowns and swords sit on the dining table, waiting to be stored. Scripts and paperwork litter my desk and all I do is blubber. On the fourth day, I start to muse about the music I might use for the next year's production. By the fifth day, I'm blocking the actors in my head. By the sixth, I'm negotiating a rehearsal space. It is the only way to stop blowing my way through boxes of tissues. Moving on.

This year I called a cheerful "so long" and "see ya later" to nineteen friends, including my mentor, the fourth-grade teacher Sydney. Here's what I know:

Fifth-graders off to middle school:

Fourth graders:

  • Nathan (enrolled in a school for gifted students)
  • Belinda (enrolled at our school, never showed up; we all hope she is somewhere good)

Third graders:

" 'Tis better to have loved and lost"...and all that. Yup, I know.

*If you have any ideas on how to reach Mr. Richards, please let me know.

Dear Mr. Richards,

I like the way you act on "Seinfeld." I like the way you come in the door.

I am a fifth grader and this is my last year. I came out on a play "Twelfth Night" and I played the prat of Sir Andrew Aguecheek. Watching Seinfeld helped me on my physical comedy. When the people would laugh it felt like a big wave of warm water falling on me.

I would love it if you could send my a signed picture of your self. Thank you for all the laughs you gave me.



  1. You have no idea of the impact you made on them - huge, I am sure! I can't wait to hear about this year's troupe.


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