Hello friends. Welcome back.
I took a little two week break for myself, and pulled back from social media and writing for a while. It was a blessing to be with my thoughts and to pour my extra energy into my body and wellness during that time. I spent time with myself. I spent time with my love. I spent time with his children. I got to do a Zoom Christmas with my family. I just let myself love and it felt full.
We have now entered 2021. In December, during Morning Meeting, one of my students said, “is the virus going to go away in 2021 because it’s a new year?”
I wanted to hug that child and hold on to them for their innocence and love.
I had to explain that the doctors and scientists and nurses and health care workers are working so hard. But that it is not something we can guarantee. And that we have a role to play in making sure things get better. We can continue to socially distance, to wear our masks, and to wash our hands. We can do those hard things, and do them every day when around others we don’t live with, so that we can keep ourselves and others safe.
I have stopped caring if there is anyone that politically disagrees with what I just said. My job is to keep these children safe, and I’m going to do that by being honest. By telling them it’s okay to wear their masks around family they don’t see except at holidays. If someone feels like arguing with me, ok…but for what gain?
I want us all to see 2022.
But I’m not here today to write about the virus or living most of 2020 in a pandemic or fear based thinking. I’m back and sharing because my mind is working overtime.
I’m moving into myself this year in a new way. 2020 saw me really learning to love myself fully for the first time in my life. I’m thinking about how long it took to get here. I’m 50 years old. I genuinely could not look myself in a mirror until the year I turned 50 and say “I Love You” without crying. My kind friend, a parent of a former student that we lost to tragedy, told me to practice this as a way of transforming my pain. This is something they had done after their child died, every day, until they could do it without crying. I cried a lot in 2019 and 2020, but I kept practicing.
Now I can beam at myself and tell myself how much love I hold for ME. For being who I am right in the present moment. Sometimes I stay there a long time, carrying on a conversation with myself, telling myself all the things I know I need to hear because I know myself better than anyone does. I get hugely annoyed when I hear the phrase, usually said with love, “I know them more than they know themselves.” UM. That’s a problem. If you loved them you’d help them know themselves the best.
I tell my students things like this every day.
You are the only person you will spend every second of your life with.
You are the ONLY YOU that WILL EVER BE. EVER.
You are here on this planet for a reason, and you have something to give the world that ONLY you can give.
We are learning about how others can inspire us to change this week in our reading lessons. It’s straight from the basal curriculum. One thing I know I LOVE about myself, it’s how to take what is given and make it 10x deeper to the 10th power. We are writing and brainstorming about WHO is inspiring to us. Who makes us feel inspired? Why? What qualities and attributes do they have that make us want to develop those things in ourselves? Then we’re taking that inspiration and writing essays about how our story, our uniqueness, can inspire others.
I did a model of the activity, which is my way, which is the way of most teachers. As I modeled I surprised myself and my students with the litany of stories of blowing it and failing, spectacularly.
The shocker here is that MY FAILURES and the places where I’ve stumbled and fallen but then gotten back up were the parts of myself that I know are the most inspiring parts of my story. The ways I’ve taken what didn’t work and learned from it, or when EVERYTHING WENT WRONG OR BROKE APART and what I did after-that’s the part of my story that makes me want to tell it.
It’s what we do during and what we do after life’s pitfalls and life’s challenges that really send us on our path.
I think this space is where Mary Oliver came up with this:
“What will you do with your one wild and precious life?-Mary Oliver
So, now I have an ask for you, my friends.
I want to write my story, not only here but also in a more formal way. I want to…gulp…submit a book proposal in 2021. Part of any book proposal is how the author interacts with their audience. This is where I need you.
If you enjoy my work, drop a comment here on WP, or subscribe to get my posts via email, or comment on my Social Media or follow me on Social Media. It would mean so much to me. What I can do with my story and my work if I have a larger audience is something I can barely conceive of right now, but I know it’s out there. I know it is. I hope you’ll join our community.
I have learned about asking that the ask is offering the opportunity for connection. I myself am drawn to memoir and people’s stories like butterflies to lilacs. I swarm the stories of others, especially women. I connect with their words and learn more about myself by learning more about them. I honestly love hearing the realness, brokenness and transformation of humans. It is what stirs me up and makes me spend my day with humans.
I love you, too. I always have. Thanks for reading today.