I have no doubt that you have had more than one night of complete exhaustion over the past month. For a myriad of reasons; parent teacher conferences, sports supervision, college visits, FCCLA/FBLA/FFA conferences, state events, testing, etc, October seems like it is never ending, while flying by at the same time. You have probably been more than frustrated by the amount of days students have been out of the building for the same activities. It seems like you can never catch up and just when you think you are there, another group of students brings you a sign out sheet to attend another event.
Instructional time is a valued and important resource we never seem to have enough of. However, all of these "other" activities that draw students away from our classroom or keep us at school until midnight have value as well. As educators, we have the enormous responsibility to not only prepare students for life, but help them write stories worth telling. And with this responsibility, comes long days and sometimes longer nights. You may be physically, emotionally, and/or mentally exhausted but you may also be "good tired." I recently came across the following passage in the book, "Man in the Mirror" by Patrick Morley:
"Two kinds of tired make their way into my life. Sometimes when I go home, I'm "good tired." You know the feeling. You spent yourself in a worthy cause. Your tired--but you feel great!
Theodore Roosevelt described "good tired" this way:
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again...who knows great enthusiasm, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at the least fails while daring greatly, so that his place will never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."
Very few professions bring with it the responsibilities and rewards that being an educator does. We are preparing future generations to be leaders in whichever field they wisely choose. At times we are going to be tired, but hopefully when you lay your head down at night, completely exhausted, you can smile and know it was for the benefit of "our" kids. So while exhaustion, frustration, and weariness can be used to describe October, my hope is that your heart is ultimately filled with pride, excitement, and joy knowing you are spending yourself for a worthy cause. Thank you to all educators for doing what you do!