I was afraid when I was finally able to get back into the classroom and teach, relieved but afraid. My life had changed in an instant in that classroom as long as it took for one confused young man to pull the trigger.
I could have died that day, but I didn't. I was alive, and I knew I was meant to teach, I was meant to go back to my students.
I may not be able to walk any longer, the bullet had taken that away from me, but it certainly had not taken my ability to teach, my determination to reach out to these kids.
I was frigthened but I was determined, determined to make a difference in my students life, and determined to show the one's that had helped me through the months of rehab and coming to terms with everything, that their efforts were not for naught. I was back, I may be frightened, but I was back.
I could not let that kid take any more for me, than what he already had. I could show these kids that I was still going to make it that I was going to be okay, and the truth was I was.
I could not be defined by that bullet that left me paralyzed from the waist down. I refused to be defined by that. I was going to write the chapters in my life myself, not let some confused kid do it for me.
I was scared yes, but the fear would go away, just as the anger had, and I would settle back into routine, perhaps a little more aware of my surroundings, a little more aware of what troubled kids could do if they were not given the necessary treatment, I would certainly look at the signs more closely.
I was going to get back to teaching though, and I felt a sense of joy as I sat in front of the classroom, ready to teach once again.
To Be Continued