being a teacher, being me

We Got This

As I write this my little boy, Oskar, is getting outfitted with a heart monitor.  For the next 24 hours every beat, every extra beat, will be recorded so we can see if this new irregular heartbeat is something I need to cry more tears about or if we can just breathe a sigh of relief.  For the first time ever when I googled medical symptoms, my heart was actually more relieved than worried.

But still, I sit on an airplane on my way to California, once again not there when I feel like I should be.  Not there when something that is much scarier to us parents than to him is unfolding in my hometown.    Not there when even though there is nothing I can do by being there, I had to go on my own journey and not be with my family.


This kid and his faces


The mommy guilt is real.

But so is the support of my husband.  You see, the best decision I ever made was to marry the man I did who turned out to be an incredible father.  I am not surprised, he is an incredible human being.  He’s got this, of course, he does, and he let me know that as I packed my bags this morning and said goodbye.  Oskar didn’t care, he was off from school and so excited to get this machine put onto him, especially since he can’t shower when he has it on.

I think of all the times, I have had to look to my husband to take care of things when I couldn’t.  How when Thea was born we became a team, no matter what.  How as Ida, Oskar, and then Augustine showed up, we grew together instead of apart.  How we have been a team since then.  I chose him, I know he’s got this.

And we can hope the same for the teachers that our children get.

Because we trust those teachers that welcome our children every day to have this.  That they got this, even when we feel like we should be there.  That even when our child cries and says they miss us and ask us if they can stay home today, that we are sending them to a good place.  To a place where they will be seen, and loved, and heard, and protected.

We trust those strangers who welcome our kids to make great decisions for them.  To help shape them.  To see them for the full person they are and not just the child they hoped would show up.

We can’t forget that as teachers.  I can’t forget that.  When that child is having that day.  When that child is doing that thing.  When that child is pushing that button.  When that child is a mystery.

That’s when we remember that we got this.

That by sending their children to us, the parents that we serve are trusting us with their most precious thing.

That by sending their children to us, they are telling us that they need us to be a partner.  To step in when they can’t.  To help raise a child when that child is with us.  Not because we will make that child better, but because together we can do more.

So while my heart may be hurting a lot these days, I know that I chose right when I married my husband.  I know that I don’t need to worry because I know that Oskar will always be in the best of hands.

Just like when we put them on that bus every morning and tell them to have the best of days.

Just like when we say good morning as the first bell rings and we greet each child like they were our own.

We got this.

If you like what you read here, consider reading my newest book, Passionate Readers – The Art of Reaching and Engaging Every Child, out August 2017.  This book focuses on the five keys we can implement into any reading community to strengthen student reading experiences, even within the 45 minute English block.  If you are looking for solutions and ideas for how to re-engage all of your students consider reading my very first book  Passionate Learners – How to Engage and Empower Your Students.      Also, if you are wondering where I will be in the coming year or would like to have me speak, please see this page.


9 thoughts on “We Got This”

  1. Pernille, There are no words that can express my thoughts for you and yours. Know that you have teachers everywhere holding you in our hearts, and people like my wonderful daughter, who is a cardiac nurse caring for patients like your son, those with extraordinary conditions…… who cares so much for all of her patients and stands beside people like you and your husband and your son. May the sun shine on your heart and keep you strong. May the results be only the best. What a spirit your son has!

  2. Your words touched my heart – as they often do. Thank you for sharing your words, thoughts and feelings with us – your story. Knowing each others’ stories makes the world a better place. May your son be well and your family strong.

  3. Pernille, This is one of the most important messages that we all need to remember everyday. Each parent lends us their very best child. They send us their most important piece of their lives. It is incumbent upon us to remember this. Thinking of you and Oskar. His “camera face” is wonderful!

  4. Mom guilt is SO real. I will return to work in one week and I am already missing my little guy. But at home I touch the lives of my two children and my wonderful husband. At school I get the chance to touch the lives of many more. By being my best at school I am also my best at home. Decisions are sometimes very hard but you and I are lucky to have such a strong support team at home and work.

    Hope all is well with your beautiful son. Your family is in my thoughts.

  5. My daughter also has an irregular heartbeat. She’s 8 now and has always been active, played with her friends, and been a regular kid despite her heartbeat. Every two years she goes for the full range of tests (ultrasound, EKG, etc.) and wears the monitor for 24 hours. (She pretends she is a robot!) So far we’ve been lucky; her special heartbeat hasn’t impacted her, other than her robot-phase! Anyway, I understand the concern and I agree, you’ve got this. ❤

  6. Really love this post, Pernille. I’m sure everything will turn out well; you’ve got great family support. And, yes, it’s so important to put ourselves in the shoes of the parents of our children. The best thought: parents trust us with what’s most precious to them, so let’s make sure we take good care of the children entrusted to us.

  7. After two days of conferencing with parents, your words touch me at the perfect time, yet again. It is a gift to become a part of a community of families each year who put their trust in me to care for their children as I would my own. Kindest thoughts for you and yours.

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