It happened slowly. It was uncomfortable. For a long time it was unidentifiable. I resisted it. At times I actually fought it. After several years I could no longer deny it. A transformation was occurring and there was nothing I could do to stop it.
Let’s look back 5 years to see where I was….
- Teacher – effective yet not satisfied (whatever that means!)
- Unsettled – my “teacher” skin was getting itchy
- Isolated – great colleagues yet felt professionally alone
- Protector – supporter and defender of those in need
At the time, our school was working under oppressive leadership. I’ve always been a giver but during this time I felt myself changing. There were some troubling things happening in our school. My fellow teachers, in my opinion, were being “abused.” It was at this point that I felt my fierce mama bear come out. These were my teachers and I was going to protect them. I needed to take action!
The actions that I took during those dark days are not necessary to share but what resulted from those actions is.
What I learned about myself during those trying times…
- Resilient – like Chumbawamba says in their song Tubthumping “You’re never gonna keep me down.”
- Courageous – willing to live outside of my comfort zone to benefit others
- Capacity – able to bring together and positively influence others
Eventually the dark days passed and new leadership was at the helm. My unsettled feelings and struggle with isolation were still present yet I was feeling confident in the changes that I helped bring about in our school. Under the guidance and encouragement of our new leadership I was able to embrace the transformation that was occurring within me.
Let’s fast forward to the present to see where I am now…
- Collaborator – growing and learning with our entire school
- Unsettled – embracing the discomfort that growth and learning create instead of fighting it
- Connected – isolation is a choice that I now choose to dismiss
- Leader – encouraging and supporting growth in our school community
My transformation is far from complete and I’m ok with that. I am less “itchy” in my own skin and am feeling excited about some new opportunities that have been presented to me. I don’t know where my educational journey will take me but I do know that I am on the right track. My experiences over the last five years have taught me that instead of just reacting to the circumstances around me and letting that unsettled feeling take control I need to stop and reflect. I need to acknowledge and embrace my feelings instead of letting them overpower me. I need to take action where I can but also need to step back and realize that some things are outside of my control. Ultimately I have realized that how I deal with the transformations in my life is my choice. I can ride the wave and choose to find the positive or I can get caught in the undertow and let the negative drown me. The choice is mine.