Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Written by Michelle

I’m breaking out the mix tapes. I want to hear the sweet, drowning sounds of Air Supply, REO Speedwagon maybe some Damn Yankees. Loud and blaring, enough to dissipate this feeling. Maybe if it gets really bad, and I need to cope, I’ll get out the Chicago.

The sweat pants are on, and the oversized “perfect feel” shirt is ready. The jar of Nutella is at hand. The homemade chocolate chip cookies are on stand-by. I’m reaching for a glass of wine with my free hand as I type. I might even dust off my poetry journal and write a couple of lines. I’m just not sure where to start.

We’re breaking up.

This is it.


*Sigh* Terminamos.

Well… it’s almost over.

Or is it only the beginning?

In less than two weeks all communication will cease. No more interactions. No more middle of the day email messages. Goodbye friendly reminders and feel-good stories. So long hand-written and email exchanges. I’ll miss your simple remarks, your kind words, your genuine smile and love. All of it gone, yet tucked away in a very special place next to my heart.


You should be.

This is my end-of-the-school-year meltdown. I’m breaking up with my child’s teacher, and it’s just not pretty. The toughest part is, I don’t think she knows we were even in a serious relationship.

She had me at “Hello!” Literally, she did.

Walking into her classroom before the beginning of the school year I remember looking around and feeling like I wanted to be a second grader again. Her energy, her enthusiasm, her passion shined through. The classroom environment was perfect, and her eagerness to teach was contagious.

I fell in love with her drive, and my son, in an instant, with her. It was tough to witness. His smile, her enthusiasm. Inspiring. Awesome. All even more incredible when I saw what later developed.

As the year unraveled, a fantastic little second grader emerged.

He became a voracious reader: from dinosaurs to the colonial times, he read it all and wanted more.


From experiments to math. He came home and practiced science using his sisters as guinea pigs and our kitchen as his lab. He stopped using his fingers to count and his toes became part of some equations. Creativity at its best!


Again and again he would make us get on the computer and talk to us about smart boards, Firefox, Moodle and Google Documents. He declared he could “teach us” how to understand them. Maybe one day as well as he did.


I’ll admit, I’m the jealous kind. Seeing my little boy’s eyes shine every time he mentioned this other woman was tough. But how could I be jealous of another human being who simply sparked a fire to learn within my little one.

Liam was blessed to be in a classroom with an educator who passionately took her job to another level, who believed it was her responsibility to encourage, inspire and motivate children beyond those four walls and into their everyday lives.  Liam flourished, grew and matured because of the impact a caring educator had on his life.

Ok, Ok…let’s be honest. He is still a goof and far from perfect. But, because of her, he is well on his way to third grade.


I’m so grateful and blessed and now…


As a fellow educator, I appreciate the time, dedication, and all the amazing work (not job-description related) that goes unnoticed. The emotional investment teachers make in all our children; the time; the money (or lack thereof) that goes into this career; the sleepless nights that don’t go into an everyday lesson plan or a formal evaluation. It’s selfless, most times undervalued. Yet, SO powerful.

As a parent, I’m grateful for the sensational educators that my children have had, the times their eyes light up when they are talking about a classroom experience, the positive memories they have forged together with positive instructors leading a class. Each teacher sets the bar higher. This time, so high… it’s making this break-up a really tough one.

As a mother, I’m curling up with my iPod tonight. Sweats on, soft oversized t-shirt.  I’m blaring the break-up music with all necessities at hand.


I’m grateful for a remarkable year. I have the summer to heal and the next season to fall in love all over again.

Unless I can convince the school board to move Liam’s teacher to third, fourth and maybe even fifth grade…

Categories: Emily

Tags: , , , , , ,

2 replies

  1. Hysterical! I always love my kids teachers’ when they say nice things about my kids. They took the time to think a of a nice way to talk about the three beings, other than my husband, nearest to my heart. Who could not love that? Great post!

  2. Great tribute to teachers! Hope Liam’s teacher gets to read this!

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