Goodbye, Room 137



Today, I packed up my classroom, left the key at the front office, and said goodbye to Waco Charter School. Even though it’s only been two years I’ve taught in that room, it still felt incredibly strange and nostalgic to look at that big empty blue room and flick the lights off one last time. Room 137. Mr. Amberg’s class. Maybe it’s because it was my first big boy job, maybe it’s because the job itself was such a Godsend, but I think it has more to do with the amount of life I lived in that room. (You’d be surprised how much life gets squeezed into two years when you’re shut up in a room with 18 less-than-8-year-olds!)

I experienced lots of fun lessons and activities in that room, made some very good friends in that room (both adult and kids), I got to see kids come alive in that room sometimes because of me and sometimes despite me. I experienced lots of defeat in that room. Defeat at the hands of kindergarteners who didn’t know what they were doing, defeat at the hands of some very hurtful adults who knew exactly what they were doing. (More on that later. Maybe…)

I think more than anything, flicking that light switch was flicking off one chapter of Emily and my life, in order to walk into another chapter. Yet another transition in a near-decade of transition. First it was college (I consider that 4 years of transition!), then it was Elevate, then dating/engagement/marriage, and finally teaching. Now that’s done, and it’s time to move on. I think what I’m ultimately saying is, I might finally be ready to stop transitioning and settle into something permanent. I think I’m ready to call India home.

I like to think that maybe God has had His hand in all of this. Like He has been orchestrating this whole decade of transition to feed my wanderlust until it is no longer hungry. Because maybe what He is calling Emily and me to in India is something that requires nothing short of longevity, and for the first time in my life I’m beginning to crave longevity.

I suspect there will come a day when the hunger for this longevity is quenched and my wanderlust once again grumbles. But for now, I think I am ready to say goodbye to Room 137 and all it’s ever-changing craziness. Tomorrow, I get on a plane in search of home.

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