You know I'm a short-timer, right? That Mrs. Hillbilly Mom only has one year and 7/8 left of her teaching career? So you would think one so fortunate as Mrs. Hillbilly Mom might be all rainbows and unicorns over-the-moon nice to everybody she encounters throughout the day. Well. Except for that one grade level that shall remain nameless.
Most of the time, that scenario is true. I like my job. Enjoy it once I get there, even though I would rather be lolling around the house doing nothing. So I surprised myself at the teacher lunch table the other day. A Freudian slip, so Freudian that I was embarrassed for slipping, accidentally escaped my lips.
We were discussing a new student, one who has already had a couple of encounters with the Suspension brothers, In-School and Out-of-School. I've never had a direct problem with him. He's polite to me. Turns in his work most days. And after I told him not to draw on my desk with ink ever again, he hasn't.
Having at my fingertips a program which not only shows me a student's schedule, but also his parents, his birthday, his address, his lunch fees, and his allergies/illnesses...I make a point of using it at the beginning of the year. Just in case, you know, somebody has a peanut allergy and carries an Epi Pen. Or is allergic to Germ-X. Or can't have his picture posted on school websites or published in the paper.
While fellow staff and I did everything but sing "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria" in an effort to determine how we may help this student be all that he can be...I shared with them my first-week-of-school discovery.
"You know he has ODD, right? Occupational Defiant Disorder?"
As they turned to look at me like I'd sprouted an extra head, or like they'd seen my driver's license photo, I stammered, "WAIT! I know that's not it! I meant Oppositional Defiant Disorder!"
Yeah. Occupational Defiant Disorder would be me. Mrs. Hillbilly Mom. Sometimes disgruntled schoolmarm.