I was a Baby Boomer and we descended on the schools of the sixties like starved locusts. The schools, faced with this tidal wave of little empty-headed terrorists, went from learning institutions to factories that processed students like some kind of meat byproduct. Classes were busting at the seams. Teachers were over worked, over aged and in short supply. Trouble was peeking over the horizon just waiting for the chance to pounce and I was the target.
Once over the trauma of missing your mother and your lifelong companion, your binky, school becomes an adventure of new and wonderful discoveries like bus rides, new friends, lunch bag surprises, and everyone’s favorite, recess. Later on in the fifth and sixth grades you are starting down the path of young adulthood with newfound responsibilities. Fourth grade on the other hand, was a breeding ground for Tasmanian Devils. We were no longer rookies and reveled at the chance to see how far we could push the envelope. We were the Terrible Twos of the school system.
For the most part, elementary school was a prison for me. Teachers struggled with just maintaining control let alone having time for each student. Right or wrong,...
... middle of paper ...
...eed to escape and trust raged in my head.
I decided to chance it and said in a shameful tone “I’m sorry, I was daydreaming.”
I looked at the floor bracing for the coming wrath.
“Well I can certainly understand why with it being such a beautiful fall day outside. We are almost done and recess is just a few minutes off. Bear with us a little longer.”
Lifting his arms over his head in a stress relieving stretch, he moved on to another student. Relief washed over me and then thoughts of the fall day vanished from my mind. A chill of wonderment went up my neck. The realization that my prison had blossom into a place of hope grew in my mind like a new born sunrise after a stormy night.
College graduation and four decades have passed and yet I still find myself reflecting from time to time, about the teacher who cared and the year I discarded my Invisible Cloak.
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