Thankful Thursday: Teaching In Covidlandia, 13/180

The Good:

I’m home now. I’m listening to music. I’m writing. (happy place)

I got to volunteer with Rainbow Coffee House today, one of my favorite things. This is a group for LGTBQ+ teens to gather. We used to meet every Thursday during the school year…but then Covid. So today was opening day and we only meet every two weeks. It was a last minute thing for me to attend today, because one of the adults scheduled to volunteer had an emergency. So I got to volunteer with my friend (and Pastor). We all wore masks, we had temperature check equipment, and we were socially distanced. Only two teens came, and they had never come before. They and their grown ups stood up talking to me and Angie the whole time, for an hour and a half. But it was so sweet, and while weird, was so “normal” to have this gathering happen again. My heart aches for kids right now, but especially for Queer kids. Oh the anxiety, both of them were too scared to get out of their cars. I just send out all the love to them.

I was able to have my students do multiple things at the same time today. It may sound like “why is that a big deal?” if you’re not a teacher. But honey. This is a big deal. I had kids doing self-choice in Daily 5, I was listening to students read timed readings, and I had two kids testing NWEA tests. I am NOT KIDDING. The kids did 3 rounds of Daily 5 while we did this…and it was completely silent in my room. Some hum or read super quietly to themselves, so that doesn’t count.

What I’m saying is that a miracle happened and so please…do a round of applause. Ok now do a hexagon of applause. Now do a column of applause. You get how I teach vocabulary now? 🙂

The Bad:

Due to the extreme stress in my life I’m suuuupppeeerrr struggling to just do life.

Since Covid started I’ve thought often “how did I manage to HAVE A JOB AND LIVE LIFE?”

Um. It’s as hard as I obviously remembered it was.

That’s why pets are self-care.

This Covid stuff is no joke, and teaching in it is actually like a joke. IT IS SO HARD.

So I do what I can.

Every state and home I’ve had in the past is currently in the line of fire in California or Oregon. Oregon, where I lived more of my life than in any other place, is so engulfed in flames and in the areas I used to live. It is horrifying that so many people and places I love are struggling right now. I just send out love, because what else can I do?

The Reflection:

What can I do but reflect all the time? Listen to music? Try to exercise?

Listening to Better Man, Pearl Jam

Everything is harder.

My friend Katie posted on social media the other day “I’m really tired of life being on hard mode.”

You get it, right? Like how in video games you can play easy or hard mode?


Jess and I think life is actually on Expert Mode right now. It’s incredibly hard and ridiculous. Everything we do is amplified to an unreal level of precaution and awareness.

What did we do with our brains in a normal time?

Were we bored?

Yes we were bored. Remember bored? What a luxury that was.

I got home today and looked at the weeds growing on my sidewalk stretch and felt a few things. I felt lazy, bereft, unfit to own a home, frustrated, annoyed, tired.

I decided to just deal with it. I looked for my gardening tool to eradicate weeds for 15 minutes. I finally found it. Then I went out there with a bucket, headphones of music and a beer, thinking it would take an hour.

It took less than 10 minutes. The weeds pulled out as easy as wiping a whiteboard clean.

Sometimes the things we THINK will be hard are actually in reality easy.

And sometimes the things we THINK will be easy are actually in reality hard.

Just try to do a little better than yesterday. If you can’t do that, well, try to THINK better about YOURSELF than you did yesterday. Because honey, we are all working really hard. Really hard.

Have grace for yourself and your life and your choices. Remember that we have our whole entire lives to figure out being human.


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