Speech team try-outs are this week. We had 40 people sign up. This is unprecedented for us, and I'm totally thrilled. I have two amazing new coaches (I know we haven't even started yet, but I can just tell how awesome they are). And my captains are the best captains I've ever had.
I know I said I wanted desperately to quit this overly demanding position. And I did. But I am realizing how important it is to me. Mostly, it's the kids. Three things happened to show me how much they love me (yes, I'm bragging, but there's more...)
1. A sophomore favorite (yes, of course I have favorites) was telling me about how he was recruiting for the team, "Mrs. [My last name] is the coach. That's all you need to know." Jeff, I said, you need tell them more than that. "Uh-uh. You make it as fun as it is." Being as I'm all he's known, I suppose that makes sense.
2. Suzanne, who's been an assistant here as long as I have been head, had to quit. Students cried. She didn't even work with all of them. And she was only here twice a week. But they loved her, and were sad and mad both when she left. This strong reaction makes me worry how they'll react when I DO quit. Clearly, they aren't ready (and neither am I, but I will be some day, like when I have kids...can't work 12-hour days when you have kids).
3. My awesome and a half captains were talking t-shirt designs, and last year the slogan included my name. So, they say, "This year, we're going to put your picture on the shirt and it will say [My last name]'s Homies" NO! I said. No more ME on t-shirts! The shirts are for SPEECH! "But [My last name], you ARE speech." Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww.
I feel like Sally Fields in 1979: "You like me! You really like me!" But what I've realized is that no matter when I decide to give this up (only partially, as assistant coaching will still be on the agenda), it will not be easy. Right now, my freshman when I started are my seniors. Four years. One complete cycle. But now I've got new crops of kids I want to see all the way through. It won't happen if I have babies when I want to, so it already makes me sad. The fact that my current sophomore favorites will be seniors when I most likely quit is sad. I'm sad. No longer excited. I complain and complain about this work, but I love, love, love, love it. There's just no denying it :-).