I write this blog shortly before taking off for Easter vacation.... actually only an hour before departure...I am assuming super-speedy typing skills for this task...
What better way to begin this post than to relay a brief interaction with a senior student this morning- which really began my day on a good note. I came into my office, to be quickly joined by a number of students eager to eat the (slightly green) bananas. As I was sitting there chatting with a few students before school began for the day, a senior came to grab a banana and leave me with this: "My, Emily, you're looking radiant today." Ha! What a great compliment. I think I smiled a bit brighter all day, thinking to myself that I evidently looked radiant, I should be radiant! :)
This short story really characterizes my day in general- and the several days preceding today as well. It has been a wonderful week, I am feeling on top of things here in the office, despite the short 3-day weeks, and I am continuing to relish the great relationships I have with so many students here. I have definitely come a long way in terms of learning what type of interaction is best received from the students, while still maintaining the line of faculty/student structure. It's a never-ending art for all teachers here at Red Cloud.
I am both happy and sad to report that the boys received 3rd place in the State A Basketball tourney in Sioux Falls this past weekend. I am happy because 3rd place is a tremendous accomplishment which should be celebrated, yet I am sad because they had their hearts set on the championship trophy, and couldn't quite pull it off. -One of those games, you know, where things happened right for the other team and wrong for us. I particularly feel bad for the seniors who obviously have been taking it with a sense of loss, although they seem to be bouncing back quickly.
Another positive note in the high school: we just received word that 12 of our 13 applicants for the Gates scholarship (a need-based full-tuition scholarship for minority students to attend any college or university through the doctorate level) made it to the final round, which basically means they simply need to fill out some confirmation details and will receive the scholarship. Hurray!!!
'Tis the end of the 3rd quarter here at Red Cloud, which means that our school year is quickly coming to a close. I do not yet know how I feel about this, considering it is sometimes difficult to feel at all, when the immediate proximity of students overtakes all sense of reflection... Yet I will say this: when I think about saying goodbye to these seniors- and the sadness I encounter- I cannot help but think how difficult it will be for those faculty members who have known them for much longer than I. It's strange to be in this role as faculty vs. the role I am accustomed to, as student. I am grateful for the opportunity to attend the senior spring retreat, in which many tears are shed (I'm told) in saying goodbye and thinking toward the future.
I didn't mention that I also had the chance to catch up with some dear friends and family over the weekend, which was wonderful! My sister and brother-in-law just signed on their new house mortgage, and I was able to assist in moving their belongings. I am grateful for being in SD for many reasons, and one of which is being closer (than most volunteers) to home.
Another reason I feel it was a great decision to come here to Pine Ridge is the receptivity of students toward a native South Dakotan. Granted, I use the term native to imply I have never known another permanent home (not in regards to my ethnicity), yet in some miraculous way, it connects me with the students... and they all respond with "Oh, that's cool!" when I say I'm originally from Arlington, SD. Who knew, huh?
I haven't written recently about my weight lifting classes. Overall they have been doing really well. I have the football coach with me during the period of 19 guys (recall the crazy 7th period class of last semester?) and they maxed out on a few lifts this week. I was thus inspired to max out on my own bench press- which came to a whopping 105 pounds. There you are, real facts about the muscle capacity of Emily Fischer.
My time is quickly coming to an end. I shall thus depart toward that which I aspire to be a relaxing and family-filled Easter break. (I have been reading Jane Eyre, the reason behind my 'thus' and 'aspire') :) I wish you all a mighty, splendid, and peaceful Easter season- in whatever way you decide to celebrate.
Sending Christ's love from me, a girl in a pink shirt with a 'radiant' smile on her face,
7 months ago