Monday, April 28, 2014

No Ordinary Day

I stood in the parking lot of Walgreens and took a deep breath. I looked at the other people walking into and out of the store. I saw the cars driving down the road to somewhere. Everything was normal, ordinary.

"For everyone else," I thought, "this is just an ordinary Thursday." It wasn't an ordinary Thursday for me. My wife had a car accident on Wednesday evening. She is in the hospital. My regular, ordinary days have changed. The people around me were going about their regular routines. Last week I was doing the same. It was a regular Thursday. Now I had a different routine.

Those people went about their business not knowing that I had a new reality. "How are you?" asked the cashier in Walgreens. "Have a great day."

As I drove home on that not-so-ordinary Thursday, I began to think about things. I wondered about my class that day; they had a substitute teacher since I was out. I wondered how things went.

I thought about each of my students. So many of them have challenges in their families or circumstances. I know I only have an inkling of what they face. Yet, often I go through our ordinary school days without thinking about that.

Maybe they are struggling with subtraction or not engaged in our shared reading or having difficulty paying attention because they are distracted by things beyond their control.

Maybe the ordinary day with our learning isn't so ordinary for a student.

I understand. I'm there now myself.

I cannot know everything that is going on with each student. But I can remember that a remark or a reaction or a refusal may have nothing to do with me. In fact, most of what's going on with a student has little to do with me.

So we'll all keep working, step by step. I'll ask questions and listen. About reading. About math. About their lives. We'll keep working through our ordinary days...even when they are not so ordinary.


  1. Scott, please know that you and Cindy are in my thoughts and prayers. I hope you are able to take time off to be with her. I will gladly come up there and take your class for you if they will let me!

  2. You are in my thoughts and prayers My husband almost died from a foot infection and was in the hospital for 2 1/2 weeks. Don't forget to ask for help if you can, and try to take time for yourself, even if it's just a walk outside.You have made a huge difference in my life. Hopefully you are back to ordinary days soon.

  3. I hope that your wife is okay, Scott. I know exactly what you mean about walking around with what seems like a "higher sense of knowledge". or, I guess, a different sense of knowledge (reality)...