Just take a deep breath and remember to take care of yourself.

Just watch the ten-minute video on blood-borne pathogens and hope you never need to know this.

Just take a photo of your vaccination card and AirDrop it to your Mac.

Just convert the .heic file in your downloads folder to a PNG image.

Just upload it to your School Front account.

Just recover your lost password for School Front and reset it with another one you won’t remember.

Just remember to make a back-to-school video for the six parents who will watch it.

Just mention your agenda slideshow and the district’s new initiative to build communities through culturally-responsive teaching and learning.

Make it personal, but be professional. Just have fun with it!

Just update your online grade book in PowerSchool.

Just open the PDF and follow the seventeen steps.

Just do it again, for all of your classes.

Just create a new Google Classroom for all of your classes too.

Just migrate your rosters from PowerSchool.

Just be ready to stream your classes at a moment’s notice for students who won’t be there.

And remember to generate a fresh Meet link.

And don’t forget to update your agenda slideshow.

Just connect your Chromebook and microphone to the projector.

Just remember, HDMI 1 is broken, but HDMI 2 should be okay.

Just take a deep breath and troubleshoot before you call IT for help.

Just remember to press “8” for a dial tone and hope you never need help in a real emergency.

Just take a deep breath.

Just watch the school safety video before Friday. It’s only thirty-five minutes.

Just don’t stop watching, or you’ll have to start the whole thing over.

Don’t forget to take the quiz at the end, and remember to upload your back-to-school video to YouTube.

Just wake up early.

And drink more water.

Just drop your sons off as soon as daycare opens.

Just remember their lunches and make sure their shoes match.

Just say “I love you,” but don’t think about it too much.

And don’t be weird in front of their friends.

Just get to the high school on time.

Just form relationships with your students.

Just have fun! And play more games!

Just gently remind David to wear his mask properly for the fifth time.

Just smile when you ask him to remove his size-twelve Jordans from his neighbor’s desk.

Just remember to wipe off the desk before the next class.

Just email his mother.

Just balance flexibility with rigor.

Just make sure the rigor isn’t too stressful.

Just cover relevant topics, even when the news is uncomfortable.

Just make sure everyone is always comfortable.

Just prepare for EVERYTHING that could possibly go wrong.

Because it could.

And don’t forget to restock the hand sanitizer.

Just take a deep breath and remember to carve out time to take care of yourself.

Just drink more water.

Just process current events so you can immediately craft a meaningful lesson that helps students make sense of things like school shootings and armed insurrection.

Just process it all faster.

Just cover both sides.

Just photocopy the articles again. This time, both sides. Both sides.

Just go to the bathroom. How much water have you been drinking?

Just get to the bathroom.

Just wait for the bathroom.

Just fix the copy machine that jammed while you were in the bathroom.

Just let Mike from math do some copies. He’ll be quick. He only has a few.

Just smile and “do chatting” as he jams the machine again.

Just fix the copier when he finally gives up.

Just google “full-time photocopier repair, salary” and “how else can I make money?”

Just create a digital copy of the photocopy and post a link to it on your new agenda slideshow.

Just be sure to post the link to the digital copy of the photocopy on the stream in Google Classroom in case everyone ignores your agenda slideshow.

Just explain to your students why you haven’t finished grading their papers.

Just respond to the reply from David’s mom. Make sure your tone doesn’t reveal how angry it makes you when he throws paper balls at the wall and how his attention-seeking outbursts ruin any group activity you’ve designed to foster more interpersonal connections.

Just accentuate his positive behavior.

Just remember he’s her son when she asks to continue this exchange over the phone.

Just take a deep breath. And drink a gallon of water.

Just eat lunch as quickly as possible.

Just don’t tell your colleagues that you went to Home Depot last night to buy cinder blocks and bricks to store in your classroom so that you’ll have something heavy to throw at a shooter. Don’t tell them you’ve already picked out which kids will be helpful during a real emergency. David, with his size-twelve Jordans, will be one of them.

Just don’t think about how long you’ve been teaching—and the numbers and statistics—and how your luck may be running out.

Just don’t imagine your own sons, framed by the big window of the cafeteria where they eat the lunches you made for them. Definitely don’t think about their little shoes.

Just take a deep breath.

And remember to call David’s mom.

Know that he is her son and that he was little too, not long ago, like your own sons.

Just hope that your sons have teachers who think of all these things.