29 October 2014


Before I start writing this, let me just say, I fully realize that I am crazy.

My walls at my house are too plain. There is barely anything hanging on them. This is because I am as indecisive as a squirrel crossing the road in front of a car. And since I absolutely cannot decide, since it's obviously permanent, I just do nothing.

My walls in my classroom are too cluttered. I have stuff sticking to every single surface. It distracts me. I've seriously never had such a messy classroom. It drives me crazy, but I'm so busy doing other actual stuff that benefits the kids I never have a chance to organize. Next year is what I keep telling myself. 

Why do I think about these things? See first sentence.

But seriously, my friends who struggle with distractions: would a lot of stuff in a lot of colors on classroom walls be distracting? Should I go for a more serene working environment? They're middle school, so they have P L E N T Y of energy.

12 October 2014


I hate it when everything bothers me. 

Those days when my hip hurts, and I'm not happy about anything because everything is all wrong. Even though, of course, it's really not all wrong. It's me that's all wrong.

Those days when the weather is gorgeous, but I'm too grump tactic to enjoy it except I keep noticing how beautiful it is which only annoys me more. 

Those days when I have plenty of good books to read only I can't enjoy them because I feel like I should be doing something else. Something more worthwhile. Except I don't want to do anything else. 

This is what anxiety sometimes feels like. It mutates into a constant state of hyper-agitation, and I still haven't gripped quite fully how to deal with this part of it. 

28 September 2014


Rhonda Hartman There he is in that picture with me. All taller than me and growing up far too fast for my liking. 

Logically, in my mind, I knew that these days would come when he'd be in high school, and I knew that my time with him would be limited. I knew that he would grow tall and big and strong. I knew that he would be independent because that's what we've taught him to be. I knew all of this.

And I am so proud that he has grown to be all of these things.

But what I didn't know was that fourteen years would pass by in the blink of an eye. I didn't know that I'd miss the smell of baby Jakob quite so much. I didn't know that I'd long for those late nights when he'd wake up, I'd nurse him, and we'd fall asleep together with me holding him. I didn't know that I'd cry at the thought (just the thought!) of him moving away for college. 

I assume that all moms feel this way, but it feels lonely. It feels like I'm the only mom in the whole wide world to ever feel this...this...feeling about him leaving. This is the weirdest feeling ever. It's all pride, anxiety, a sense of accomplishment, lonely, happy, and sad all wrapped into one.

And that's all I have to say about that. 

24 September 2014


Ernest Hemingway once said, "write clear and hard about what hurts." This quote is currently the background on my iPad because it speaks to the very depths of my soul.

Here it goes for me, I'm going to write clear and hard about what hurts me. 

As y'all know I'm a teacher, and I recently made the switch to middle school at a school with an 85% free and reduced lunch and a D minus on their state report card. None of that bothers me. I'm there for the kids. 

And I love my job. 

What I don't love is people constantly putting teachers down. I know, as does everyone, that not every teacher is fantastic, not every teacher loves their job. There are bad teachers just like there are bad doctors, bad lawyers, bad judges, bad cops, bad road crew workers...the list could go on forever. The majority of teachers are all there for the same reason.

We love what we do, and we want to make a difference in the lives of children. 

It hurts those of us that go to work everyday trying our best to provide kids with the best skills we can give them to make them successful. It hurts those of us who volunteer to coach sports or sponsor clubs to provide kids with the chance to do something they love. It hurts those of us who spend our evenings trying to figure out the perfect "hook" to get that hard to reach kid involved in class. It hurts those of us who lie awake at night desperately hoping that we can get our struggling readers to comprehend. It hurts those of us who buy snacks for kids who don't get to eat at home. It hurts those of us who hug our students because no one at home hugs them. 

I am one of those teachers, and it hurts me to see my kids struggling. It hurts me when a kid tells me they're stupid. It hurts me when they cry after they get in trouble. It hurts me that they'd rather act out than ask for help. 

I don't know when teachers became the brunt of the insults or blaming for things wrong in education. I don't know when people started to have zero respect for the people who are doing one of the most important jobs in the world, educating the world's children. I don't know when it became solely the teachers fault when the educational process started to fail. 

But it hurts. 

21 September 2014


I have missed this space.

The reading of other blogs gives me this peek into the lives of people who feel like old friends. I can sit on my couch on a Sunday morning drinking coffee, wrapped in the most comfy of blankets, and catch up with these old friends. I have missed that.

The writing of this blog gives me a chance to sift through feelings that seem otherwise positively unsiftable! The Universe knows that my poor husband is probably tired of listening to me sift through them out loud. 

I'm a terrible blogger. And I just read this article wherein science proves that writing, particularly blogging, about feelings and experiences helps with all that emotional stuff that we all have to deal with, and some of us in particular have a more difficult time dealing with. 

I'm wondering if there could be an exact correlation between the amount of ever increasing anxiety I feel and the fact that I'm writing less. If I was good at the maths I'd try to figure that out, but I'm not, and so I won't bother. 

Because I'm trying to also participate in life more (Thanks Charlie for that moniker.) Let me leave you with a list of my current anxieties. I will elaborate more because the internets is nothing if not my therapist.
  • My son is fourteen and in high school.
  • Middle school where I am teaching is challenging, but I also love it?
  • My sister is not speaking to me.
  • We are never going to get pregnant.
  • They are killing dolphins in Japan.
  • My Yukon, that I love, is not fuel efficient. It's also not environmentally friendly. I worry a great deal about the environment. 
  • The state of my closet, and whether or not I should be doing a capsule wardrobe in all neutrals. I want to be a minimalist, but based upon the look of my closet I am definitely failing at that.
  • Suicide rates are rising.
  • Literacy rates are declining.  
Some of these are silly, but they're mine. Some of these I can control; most of them I can't. 

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