I consider myself lucky in life: I had scored of amazing teachers in school when I was a kid. And now that I'm a "grown up" I'm still friends with a great many of those folks who helped form me as a person.

And while we all know that teachers are a special breed of people, it is through these friendships with past mentors, and now watching my own kids and their experiences with their own educators, that it's really become clear just how special they are.

This week, many teachers will be heading into schools across the state, not to decorate their classrooms with cool posters, or make neat little stacks of welcoming school books (some of what I've been told by my teacher friends are the neat little parts of setting up a classroom). Instead, most of them will be going into school to learn something new themselves; how to keep our kids, and themselves, safe in the time of an invisible threat that has everyone on edge.

Not only are they learning about how to clean, how far away to place things/people, how to encourage kids to wear something no one is thrilled to have on their face for 10 minutes let alone 6 hours, but also how to spot signs that someone's a little too stressed, and how to come up with way for kids to connect and emotionally support one another, without physically touching each other.

And while our kids get in one last week of summer play, these fine folks get to spin the wheel of emotions from worry--for the health (both physically and mentally) of themselves, of their families, of their students, of their jobs, to disappointment and frustration of not being able to teach the way they have been used to in the past, to the excitement of what a new year, new faces and new challenges may bring.

None of this is easy, yet they show up each day, ready to take what they have and make it into something amazing.

So if you know a teacher, reach out this week with some words of kindness and encouragement. For that matter, you don't even have to know a teacher, to write a thank you or card of support to your local school.

No one knows what the future will bring, least of all me. But I do know one thing: most teachers I know are helping to stock the future with some solid kids, who will turn out to be those who shape what's to come. To do so, in this day in age, with everything going on in the world right now, is nothing short of admirable.

One of my teachers from High School shared this on her Facebook Page, and tagged all of her colleagues. Once I saw it, I knew every other teacher on the planet deserved a pep talk like this.

So teachers....this one's for you!

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