Waiting on an unknown kid to return the borrowed keys that now need to open a door for me, I chitchat with the coach whose keys they are.
I turn as a kid enters, see that he is beginning to hand the mass of keys back to the coach, and I say, somewhat smirking-smiling, “You’re the one I’m waiting on for these keys?”
It is one of my students.
He hands the keys over while I am saying this, and he gives me an affirmative answer, along with a small chuckle and a reasonably large smile.
Just as he is beginning to show his pearly whites and adorable little grin, I notice that he is about to run into me… no, that isn’t it,… without any pretext, he has simply stepped toward me, arms outstretched and he now hugs me, sweetly, while telling me that he misses me.
(Remember that my teaching ended last week, and this was my first day not being their teacher anymore.)
“You wouldn’t have even had class with me today,” (they have a sort of rotating schedule), “so you haven’t even had time to start missing me.”
“I know, but I still miss you.”
I love being in the classroom with kids, but I also really love being in this kind of relationship with them, where they speak comfortably yet still entirely respectfully to me, and interactions are more like real life, and less like a staged hierarchy of nonsense rules of society and propriety (mostly totally due to arbitrary age decisions).
I love kids.
And I love offering what I have to share that can help them move forward on their respective paths to glorious adulthood and making a beautiful difference in this beautiful world.
Yep… And I also love hugs…