It has been an emotionally tough month. We were very worried about one class member's mental health. Another class member had graphically shared so much about his past that we were worried about our mental health. The writing prompts stimulated memories and feelings that were sometimes overwhelming for students and teachers alike.
The program that sponsors our class asked us to provide "closure" at the final class. We all spent time discussing what worked and didn't work in the course. I confessed that I sometimes felt like a surgeon who opened up their chests and then left them, hearts exposed, on the operating table.
"Yeah, it sometimes feels like that," one class member told me, while others nodded in agreement.
But in the end, it was a lovely last class. The guys surprised us by writing pieces about what they had gotten out of the course. And we surprised them by writing about what we had gotten got out of the course. This experience was definitely a two-way street.
Closure? I'm not so sure we achieved that. But I'm also not convinced it's that important. Or even possible.