Like Hitting Your Head Off a Brick Wall

I hit my head off a brick wall today. It was purely accidental and quite embarrassing. Let me back up to set some context. 

I was slightly behind on my way to work this morning, so I walked quickly from my parking garage to my classroom building. I wasn't late. I simply was on the cusp of not being early, and since I didn't want to be late I sped up my pace even more in the last stretch, finding a seldom used entrance that leads to a back stairway near my classroom.

This is where things get murky. As I reached for the door handle, my foot caught on an upturned corner of the entrance's commercial-grade rubber door mat, and I tripped. Since I was carrying a bag and water bottle, I had nothing to break my fall. I smacked my head into the brick wall, then I realized I was laying on the ground.

I walked into class three minutes late.

With my head throbbing, I hadn't noticed that my knee was scuffed and bruised, and I was further surprised when a student asked, "Woah, what happened to your elbow?" Suddenly I became aware of that part of my body, too. It was bleeding.

None of the injuries seemed overly serious, though, so after explaining the embarrassing encounter and getting my bearings, I ran the class as usual. 

Partially through the session, one student quietly got up to leave the room. I thought little of it, until he came back a few minutes late holding a CVS bag, which he handed to me.

He had ordered a box of Band-Aids and Door Dashed them to our building. Let me repeat this:

He had ordered a box of Band-Aids and Door Dashed them to our building. When he left our classroom, it wasn't to use the restroom or water fountain, but rather to meet and pay the Door Dasher outside.

Class stopped. Students clapped for him and this extraordinarily kind gesture. I nearly teared up, and I'm pretty certain it's not even because I might be concussed.

You see, over the past few days, I've left campus feeling discouraged. Attendance has been spotty in one of my classes, and that's extremely unusual for me. Even though I mentally know that college students are responsible for themselves, their actions, and their attendance, I've felt like I'm failing.  

Then I go and hit my head off a brick wall, walk into my classroom with a bloody elbow, and get a gift of Door Dashed Band-Aids and so much compassion from my students that I realize maybe, just maybe, summer classes are actually going just fine.

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