Miss Night's Marbles

Musings, mumbles, marvels, and sometimes mockery, live from kindergarten.

The Luckiest People

on 4 October, 2012

I had a boss, a long time ago, at Internationally-Known-Non-Profit-Agency-of-Ill-Repute, who was a big proponent of having A Friend at Work, and encouraged us to get to know one another, socialise, connect outside of our workspace. She said everyone needed People. So we did. Socialise, get to know one another, connect outside of work. And from that came P and L, two of my long-time People: friendships that have survived and thrived through weddings and kiddos and grad school and career changes and new homes and big moves. My girls. My People.

When I moved to a new country for grad school, my dad loaded all my earthly belongings into his horse trailer and drove me down there. Once I was all set up in my teeny weeny apartment, he did the long drive home alone, and later told me he found it really hard to drive away and leave me in a town where I had no People. Funny thing is, I remember watching his truck leave my parking spot, and thinking: “Ok, I have a house, furniture, groceries, a sense of where to find things in this town. Next up: I need to find me some People.”

I found me some People, and they remain My People to this day.

A few years ago, my first year at This School, at a time when it was In Transition and longtime staff regarded new staff with the squinty eyes of suspicion. Hard to find People when no one trusts anyone. I found ONE: a grade one teacher, also new, also regarded with suspicion. If you can’t have People, have A Person. That grade one teacher is still My Person, although I have People now, too.

Today, straggling with My People (including my boss, who is totally one of My People) after a meeting… A colleague, relatively new to our school, an amazing teacher. She teaches some of my students from years ago, describes them in the very same words I used when they were kindergarteners. From her today: tears, at feeling alone in her desire to question pedagogy, at being at odds with her team, misunderstood. A realization: she doesn’t need advice. She needs some People. We get her. We love our students the way she does. We ask the same hard questions. We find the same quirky, sometimes dark, humour, in working with young children. She’s us. She’s People.

So, we’ll be her People. We’ll invite her to lunch and share our jokes and make note of her Starbucks order.

We all need People. We need to find our People. We need to be People to others. Your People may  be in the classroom next door or across the hall or up the stairs. They may not be. They may not even be in your school (or office or centre, or wherever you earn your  paycheque), although just like my long-ago boss, I think we all do better at work if we have at least a Person. Your people may be on The Twitterz (like some of my best People are). They may be commenters on your blog (hello, blog People!). They may be in a course you take or sitting next to you at a meeting.

Find your People. Be People.

This job is too hard to do alone.

People need People.


13 Responses to “The Luckiest People”

  1. […] climbing. And in this whole big beautiful busy city, I am The. Only. Person. missing Lauren. I have great people here: family, friends. They love me, and they take tremendously good care of me, but they did not […]

  2. i wish all teachers where as patient as you,you,re a special one. it takes patients to be in your field and caring. bingo nice to see someone who is so warm and understanding of wee people. keep up the good work maybe someone in your field will catch one. my hat goes off to you

  3. Kathy says:

    Well said. Teaching was so much harder as a just-out-of-college transplant following my Air Force husband to a new part of the country. I had a bit of culture shock and, for quite a while, no people. My professional life was so much more pleasant once I eventually rectified that. Knowing how hard it was for me as a young newbie, I try to reach out to new people, whether they are new staff or subs. I am so glad I work in a welcoming building. The support for each other (and a shared sense of humor) makes us all so much better at what we do!

  4. marya says:

    I realized Thursday *NIGHT* that one of my new “People” was someone else’s “Person” for probably 20 years. She was forced to move to our building (not even, really the portable AKA “The island of misfit toys”) last year, after being peeps w/that other amazing teacher for all those years. Having someone who keeps the same random late AND weekend hours as I do, who cares about kids, who cares about education/the philosophy of it AND fights the fight? Well…that brings me to my next point- which is that while I was google checking myself today, I re-found @mauimickey’s blog from #edcampkinder in which she tells me that YOU ALL are and will be my people since my school folk (for the majority) are not. Anyway…I’m glad that I came to the realization this week that I do have a new person, and that she has me and that I have all of you. xo

    • Miss Night says:

      Marya, I am SO happy you have A Person in your building at last, and equally happy that we stumbled upon one another on the Twitterz so long ago. I think we were People within just a few tweets. xo right back at you.

  5. I am new to K and can’t say I am crazy about it yet but thankfully I have People in K! If I didn’t have those people I don’t know how I would survive. I thank those people regularly for being my people.

  6. Erin says:

    So glad you wrote this. I’m at a school 7 years now- where “my people” left. I’m on the hunt for new ones. Glad you are are taking in the new person.

    • Miss Night says:

      Oh, Erin, it’s hard when your People leave! For however little it may help, please know you are one of my favourite #Kinderchat People! I know it’s not the same as day-in-day-out-face-to-face, but I hope it helps you feel un-lonely.

  7. Emma Nowell says:

    Beautifully written Amy! (and so true)

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