six months ago, i was editing and grading research papers for my english 4 students. tonight, i've been editing and grading research papers for a new group of english 4 students.
déjà vu, for sure, but with one major difference.
six months ago, Z was my distraction from the boredom and monotony of reading and grading 25+ papers. a late-night text or call from him gave me an excuse to put down the red pen and lose myself in a conversation that would usually last until one of us decided it really was time to "rack up" and get some sleep. i was always exhausted the next day, but i didn't really mind. i gladly welcomed the distraction, because those nights of talking about everything and nothing were some of the best of my life. i learned so much about being open and honest, about how to express opinions and emotions, about what is real and important. i learned how to not play games and just be myself. talking and listening and sharing and laughing and questioning and answering. i loved those nights of not getting any work done.
it took me a minute to realize what was so different about tonight's editing session, why this batch of papers have been so much harder to get through.
no distraction. no late-night text or call. no excuse.
just memories and a grateful heart that i had the distraction at all, even if it was only for a short while.