Wild Hares

6 Nov

I’m prone to getting wild hares. I’ve always been like this. I get something on my mind and I need to do it and I need to do it now. I think Ryan knows this about me even though we haven’t ever talked about it. There are some instances where his patient nature helps me calm down about certain things or decisions. But there are other times when I will not stop until I get my way. Cue nagging and endless badgering. *wink*

There is a story about me as a toddler, which may or may not be an urban legend, but it gets told every year around this time. It goes something like this…My parents had mentioned that we were going to put up our Christmas tree, which at the time was an artificial one that needed to be brought down from the attic. My dad sat down with a cup of coffee to watch a football game when I came strutting in the den, hands on my 3 year old (or 4 or 5 or 10 year old) hips and exclaim, “I THOUGHT we were going to put up the Christmas Tree.” Needless to say, the Christmas tree got put up and I’ve never lived that moment down. And before you close down this page because you think I’m going to go all Christmas crazy before Thanksgiving let me assure you that I tell this story only to give you a glimpse into what Ryan lovingly refers to as “Crazy Sarah.” (Okay, okay, I MAYBE listened to one little Bing Crosby Christmas nugget on my iPod yesterday before Ryan realized what was happening and hurried into the kitchen to put a stop to that. Just doing a little check to see what I could get away with. Too soon. Too soon.)

So today as I packed up the remaining Halloween hodge-podge and asked Ryan to take the box out to the garage I casually mentioned that he could just bring in my teaching books. “Your what?” “You know, all those books I used in my classroom.” “Sarah, why? Where are you even going to put those?” “Well, they need to come inside because it’s about to be that rainy time of year and I really don’t want them to get yucky.” “Show me where they are.” YES! SCORE!

I had him bring in three, extremely heavy and awkward to access, tubs. The first tub was the wrong one. Whoops. But as I opened the lid of the second and third tubs I think my heart skipped a beat. I had given away almost all of my classroom library except for what was left in these containers.

There, still organized by holiday and unit, were my read alouds. The books I sat in my reading corner and read year after year. We read to learn about people and faraway places. We read to learn life lessons. We read to celebrate. We read to be silly and have fun. Boy, did we read.  I kept a list of the ones we read together on pieces of chart paper that we hung on the wall.  By the end of the year it was almost always close to 150 titles.

Opening those tubs unleased memories that hung in the air as we went through the stacks book by book. There were books I had collected from vacations or museum visits. Books that I had fallen in love with because of the beautiful stories they told. Books that had been given to my classroom as gifts from students, their names still signed on the front cover.

I sometimes worry that taking these years off will make me lose the professional side of myself. My ability to teach creatively will get rusty. Maybe it will, but I don’t think the things you are passionate about ever really leave you.

I’m happy to have a new pair of hands flipping through the pages of these books. I am excited to share them with her as she grows.  Right now she loves to read.  I hope she keeps that with her always.

There are so many wondrous things to learn through the stories others choose to share with us. I think it’s important for Abigail to see me defining myself by things other than “mommy.”  She’s knows I’m her mom, but there’s more to me than that.  It’s why I like to take her running with me or have her walk with me around grown-up section of the library.  

So get those wild hares, even if the dishwasher needs to be emptied and the furniture is dusty!  It’s part of who you are.  A part of you that is important.

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5 Responses to “Wild Hares”

  1. keli November 6, 2011 at 3:20 pm #

    shel silverstein!!! i love love love shel silverstein!! this is the best post ever! 🙂

    • Sarah November 7, 2011 at 7:27 am #

      Haha! I was so excited to find that book. I hadn’t forgotten about him, but I guess he was just pushed aside for Brown Bear. ;o)

  2. Life with Kaishon November 6, 2011 at 5:59 pm #

    Oh! So exciting. I love that you found this treasure trove. Books are the best. Shel is one of my most favorite favorites : ) Visiting you today via Keli’s blog. So nice to visit.

    • Sarah November 7, 2011 at 7:26 am #

      I’m so glad you came by! Reading Shel again made me realize that some of his poems are more profound than I thought, and of course, some are just silly goodness!

  3. JustHeather November 8, 2011 at 2:03 am #

    I don’t think you’ll ever forget that professional side of you. But I also think it is more than just professional, it sounds as if you truly love what you were doing. It makes my heart sing when I see other people have such an appreciation for books as I do. It is great that you’ve saved all your books AND brought them with you. I have brought most of my childhood books with me from Oregon to Finland (talk about lots of shipping) and I keep buying more when I find them. I so wait and hope for the day that I can share my love of books with my own child.
    Thanks for the great post today!

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