On Friday morning we celebrated the end of the school year with a final assembly: student performances, awards, words of thanks, shared fika and hugs. So many hugs. Parents and students asked me again and again, “Will you be staying here next year?” I smiled and nodded. Of course.
On Friday afternoon I turned down a teaching position in Stockholm. It would have been a sideways step professionally, but I was drawn to the big city. But I couldn’t say yes. I couldn’t leave my students who hours earlier had given me flowers and hugged me tight. I couldn’t accept a job I felt pretty tepid about. I couldn’t listen to the allure of the city as loud as it had called my name. Do I question my decision? Of course. Do I mourn the loss of that path? Of course. But I am staying here for now. It feels right.
When I accepted this position last spring I signed a short term contract, an agreement through December. And then December came and went. And so did another term. And still I am here. There have been times when I have so wished to bolt, wished to give in to homesickness or grass-is-greener thinking. But I haven’t yet. Staying here feels right.
I spend Sunday mornings at a yin yoga class which is equal parts meditation, deep stretching, and me snoring in the back row. But when I can manage to stay awake, I tune into the instructor’s wisdoms. A few weeks ago she said something that has stuck with me. Hitta posen. Stanna där. Andas. Find the pose. Stay there. Breathe. I think that’s where I’m at now. I’ve found the place. And I’m staying there. When it feels right, there will be another place, another pose to work through. But until then, I’m breathing.