I didn’t write a blog post last week. I spent most of my week feeling like I was being pulled in approximately a billion different directions.
During my ‘down time,’ I was running basketball practice, walking the dog, or engaging in a number of coping strategies, sometimes simultaneously.
I felt preoccupied as I left the house on Thursday morning. I was heading to a meeting with administrators and our district attorney to prepare for a meeting with a litigious family on Friday. As I tossed my bag in the car, I should have noticed the warning signs of dim overhead lights right away.
However, it took a turn of the key to realize the truth: This car wasn’t going anywhere. Later, AAA would tow the car to a shop, where mechanics would confirm my real bad suspicions.
Luckily, my father was available to Uber me to work on Thursday and Friday. This led to exciting conversations about game theory in economics and sports en route to school, a welcome distraction from fretting about meetings.
The meeting on Friday was a long one—3.5 hours—and much of the time I felt like my integrity and competency as a special educator was being targeted. I did my best to maintain calm, speak factually, refer to data, and keep in mind that the lawyer was just doing his job like I was trying to do mine. Our district team was supportive and (for the most part) united, and this was very helpful.
It was exhausting. We gave a little, and we got a little. Like is often true when lawyers get involved in education, much money was spent for questionable gain.
After the meeting, I heard from several higher-ups that I handled myself well. Their kind words of thanks and appreciation were enough to make much of the strife from the whole ordeal melt away.
It’s funny how much a kind comment or a note of appreciation can help when you are going through a struggle, professionally or otherwise. And what an appropriate time of year to notice it!
In the days and weeks ahead, I am going to put forth extra effort to let students and colleagues know when I appreciate them. This week was a reminder of how far a little ‘thanks’ can go.
That wasn’t all I needed after this week, though. A few days off for the holiday will go a long way!