“Happy New Year!” I exclaimed as each of my students entered the classroom yesterday. There were the typical smiling faces, the greeting of friends who they had missed, and the telling of many stories from their holiday breaks. As I sat back and observed this joyful moment in time, I was suddenly filled with a deep sense of peace and presence inside my heart. Now I wouldn’t say that this feeling was a novel one for me, but I would say that too often it goes unnoticed. I have a tendency to live either in the past or the future… what do I need to worry about for tomorrow or what happened yesterday or last week that I still need to fix? These are the types of worries and thoughts that often preoccupy my everyday conscious mind.
Feeling present and peaceful gave me the opportunity to rejoice in this wonderful moment in my classroom. What a blessing it is that I have a career where I can experience the enthusiasm that young children bring forth! What a blessing it is to truly enjoy my profession and enthusiastically return to my students’ smiling faces in the new year! For just this moment in time, I was able to be present and recognize the splendor of doing so. I know that I may have a tendency to think about what needs to be done on my to-do list or become nostalgic or anxious over what happened in my past, but if I can work on observing the “now” and rejoicing in the moment more regularly, then 2013 is going to be a year of peace and presence.
Learner, Teacher, Thinker, Writer: Sarah Mokotoff teaches Second Grade at Trinity School.