My legs carried me up the brick steps to the school. The fresh, invigorating morning air did nothing to alleviate my concerns as I braced myself for the hectic schedule that would soon engulf my day. Children of various of ages stand in front of the building doors and eye me as I near them to see if I will let them inside with me. I was early and so were they.
Mumbling morning greetings, I regretfully inform them that they must wait until 8:00 am for the doors to be officially open, and escape to my warm classroom to prepare for my day. Sounds of laughter and chatter ricochet off the walls and into my empty classroom as those same children stampeded through the narrow halls once they were let in.
This marked the first day of the official return to a somewhat normal lifestyle that since the beginning of the year and I wasn’t ready.
Back to full capacity, I watched from my perch in the window as students wearing masks, filed in a line outside the school waiting for a squirt of sanitizer, and get their temperature checked by the thermometer jutting from the wall. The horde of kids remind me to prepare.
Tearing myself from the window, I sit down in my plush chair and dive into my work. For the past 10 months the reality of normalcy has eluded me, but with the new governmental statement, I can’t help but wonder if this year might end well.