When I arrive at school at 7am, I am not always awake enough to overflow with enthusiasm. That’s when I say–Thank goodness for the students! There is something magical about a child’s view on…well, basically everything. Once I open my gym door and they come in, their eyes are all lit up and they’re all smiles and full of energy–What are we doing today? They can barely contain themselves when I tell them where to go and what to do. Then when I turn the music on, forget about it! They are now bursting with excitement and the energy fills the room as their little voices fill my ears.
It’s contagious. Next thing you know, I am singing Miley Cyrus at the top of my lungs as I am running and playing with them. I can hit a badminton birdie with a foam racquet 20 times in a row, do 10 push-ups, hold a plank for 30 seconds and then run laps with a 9-year-old and it’s my job!! I always tell the kids –Don’t tell anyone how much fun Ms. Isbell has in here. They won’t want to pay me anymore.
Today, I paused for a moment, and I really watched them. I watched the expressions on their faces. The happiness they showed when playing with a friend, the exhilaration when they were successful, the frustration when they were not. I studied how they figured out skills through trial and error. I noticed how they interacted with each other and how sometimes they didn’t even notice each other. And I witnessed countless close calls that most parents could not bear to see, as boys and girls seemingly flew through the room and sometimes through the air, yet somehow they landed on their feet and no one went to clinic!…today.
And the best part hadn’t come yet. When class was over and they were lining up, THEY thanked ME. With their sweaty little heads and their red toothy faces. They were thanking me. Funny, isn’t it? They made my day and then they thanked me. Life is good!