Where are the words?
The words didn’t flow through this challenge.
I’m not sure why but this month has just not been that month for the challenge.
It’s been a tough month to be a teacher. The kids are cranky because they are tired of us and school in general. The teachers are cranky because kids are not doing what they need to do, thus are falling behind, and we have our Iowa standardized tests coming, along with the 43 documents from the district on expectations, rules, more rules, some new rules, and oh yeah, raise those scores so our school looks good.
Yup. I’ve been stressed about leaving. Self-doubt has never been my friend, but damn, it’s been eating me up right now. I had a nice talk with the teacher who is my room for next year and it helped, but I look around my current room and there are so many memories, things that have emotional meaning, and the ghosts of teachers before me. I’ve got students telling their parents they’ll be sad that I’m not here, and I know, it’s sixth graders. After next year, I’ll be that ghost in the building, but I thought I’d sleep better having made that decision. I’m not.
So I’m stressed. What does a stressed Darin do? Eat my feelings!
I’m way up in weight, which does not make me happy at all. I was so close to my goal, school started, and it’s been a rough year, thus I’m back to square one.
And all of this just weighs on my soul (literally and figuratively).
All of this plays into why it’s just been such a task to write. Even at the start of the challenge, I was writing way too late and just couldn’t get my own habits changed to make that happen.
I don’t know.
Maybe next year will be better.
But, as I’m watching March go out like a lion, the tornadoes south of us (my brother and his family and my wife’s aunt and uncle are all good) and a blizzard warning where my college roommate lives, sometimes, the writing isn’t what is important. It’s just being present in where you are and taking care of your own.
I’m not going anywhere. It’s just been a tough school year and a tough month.
I’ll see you next Tuesday, if not sooner!
March 31, 2023 at 8:12 pm
Be encouraged, Darin. The rollercoaster will soon start heading back up again. I feel your discouragement, and the weight of all you must do. If only we could just teach! Know that you make a difference, whether you write today or not.
March 31, 2023 at 8:15 pm
“…sometimes, the writing isn’t what is important. It’s just being present in where you are and taking care of your own.” Very true. I’ve enjoyed reading your writing.
March 31, 2023 at 8:31 pm
There is a lot going on in the world. And it sounds like you have a lot to wrestle with, on top of all that world weight. I’m also leaving next year (just for a year of unpaid leave, but I could be in any building after that, so I may not ever come back to where I am), so I feel you a little with that. I’m much more at peace than you seem to be – I’m staying home with my 4 year old Mama’s girl, and I’m truly so excited to be able to do that, but still, I feel the guilt too. I haven’t told the kids yet, and I know it’ll be hard when I do, but… also it will be fine. I took a year off when Covid hit, and although it broke my heart to never see those kids and some of my colleagues again, it was also fine. You will be fine too, and so will your kids. I don’t know your circumstances, but you’ve made the choice that’s right for you, and that’s a very important thing to do. As teachers, we sometimes get a little too caught up in feeling like we HAVE to be there for kids… and while it’s nice to be there for them… they will also be just fine. I’m so glad you’ve written anyway, and that you plan to keep on writing, even though it’s hard. There’s a lot to be proud of in that!
March 31, 2023 at 8:49 pm
March has thrown a lot your way, and it sounds like your hands were full before March came roaring in, as well. And yes, sometimes the writing isn’t as important as being there for the people and situations that need you attention in real and present and intentional time. Looking forward to seeing you soon, maybe before Tuesday!
March 31, 2023 at 10:43 pm
I knew you were having a tough month because you stopped writing and you NEVER stop writing. I agree, though, that teaching, especially in middle school, is tough, tough, TOUGH right now. I am not sure if I could have made it through this month if I had not been off for three weeks of covid isolation and illness and a week of spring break. The five whole days I worked did not kill my ability to reflect, write, and think creatively. 🤣 Hopefully as your school year ends and you can anticipate your move more, things will look up. We’ll all still be here, waiting for your hashtags! Good luck!
April 1, 2023 at 4:57 am
I feel all of that. I’ve had a tough year, unable to make our Tuesday deadlines over and over. You know after all these years, writing is like exercise, the more we write, the more we can. Each paragraph in this post could be a whole piece. There you go. Hang in, my friend. You are valuable to so many.
April 1, 2023 at 6:33 am
I’m so sorry to hear about your tough month. I hope that next month gets better. I must have missed something…where are you going? Are you moving schools or leaving teaching? I hope things get better for you soon!! Keep writing, even through the tough bits.
April 1, 2023 at 7:00 am
I missed your stories but sometimes it’s just like that so don’t beat yourself up… “After all, tomorrow is another day.” 🙂
April 1, 2023 at 10:51 am
I’m sorry to hear about all the challenges. This sentiment is so true- “the writing isn’t what is important. It’s just being present in where you are and taking care of your own”. Wishing you a better month/year.
April 1, 2023 at 3:06 pm
This whole year has been another very challenging one, and it sounds like you’ve had your hands more than full. Even when it’s the right decision, it’s not easy to leave and feel at peace with that. I’m relieved that your family is safe, and I’ll look forward to seeing you on Tuesdays.