Well, WHAT A WEEK!!
First of all . . .
I can’t thank you all enough for your prayers (AS ALWAYS) about my latest little predicament. I do feel like the floaters are getting better, especially when I’m inside. I get relief by being inside my house in natural lighting. Instead of SEVERAL floaters, I’ll only see one or two, and sometimes, I won’t see any at all for minutes at a time. During those times, I’m completely aware that I am seeing clearly and I just thank the Lord!! They are still pretty bad when I’m outside or in florescent lighting, which means BASICALLY I’M A WRECK WHILE I’M AT SCHOOL. Ha!! Seriously, though, I do feel better about the whole situation and I know it’s because of you all and everyone who is praying for me. God is good ALL THE TIME. And ALL THE TIME, God is good. SO! I see the ophthalmologist this Friday and I’m hoping maybe she will be able to help me or we can do something preventative for the future.
But thank you thank you thank you for all of your prayers. I am so so so appreciative and grateful.
Putting my Blog Button right there is my way of starting a new topic.
Shoulder shrug. 🙂
Last Saturday, a bunch of us from school went to see Gerry Brooks. Which, by the way, if you didn’t know, his name is pronounced GARY. This whole time, in my head, and to others, I’ve said JERRY.
And now when I tell people that Gerry Brooks is pronounced GARY BROOKS, people argue with me. I’m not kidding.
But he told us this RIGHT AWAY.
My mind was BLOWN and it was pretty much the first sentence of his concert. Was it a concert? A presentation? A conference? Stand up? I really don’t know. All I know is that I went to a high school auditorium with a ton of friends and laughed and laughed and laughed, and then felt all sorts of emotional and inspired and motivated. If you get the chance to see him, I highly recommend it.
One thing that really hit home was school culture and how it’s not up to others or your administration or anyone, really, to improve the culture of your school. It’s up to YOU. As in, ME. And that there are tiny, small things one can do to lift others up. Obviously, food is one way (my favorite way!) – just bringing in treats for others makes a difference! But another idea he had was to start a compliment journal. So you write a compliment to a colleague in a journal or a spiral bound notebook, and then that person gets it and writes a compliment to someone else, and the journal keeps making the rounds through the whole staff. And you can read your own compliment, but also all of the other compliments!
So . . . first thing Monday morning, someone had put a compliment journal in my box! And it was the sweetest compliment and I felt so happy inside! So I wrote a compliment right away to someone else and passed it on. Then the next day, it was back in my box. And my first thought was okay, this person doesn’t understand how this works, but guess what?
IT WAS A DIFFERENT COMPLIMENT JOURNAL. And it had been written in three times already and I LOVED reading the other compliments about the other staff members.
Apparently, THREE journals are going around our school.
Isn’t that the absolute coolest thing ever?!
Gerry Brooks ended with a prayer for all of us. I absolutely loved that!!!
Afterwards, we all went to the Spaghetti Factory where I had a glass of wine, way too much bread, delicious fettuccine alfredo, and lots and lots of laughter! 🙂 We ended the night at a friend’s house outside by her fireplace. It was FANTASTIC!
Earlier this week, my friend, Natalie, texted me asking for prayer.
I don’t know if you’ll remember this about my friend, but she was at my school for TEN YEARS and got displaced. TEN YEARS! Basically, there was no more room for her at the inn, and she was FORCED to leave. This was two years ago.
It was AWFUL.
She ended up teaching first grade at a nearby school. We have stayed in touch, and we share ideas, and get to see each other at district stuff. Her first year at the new school, she was alone. Then, last year, another one of our teachers, Loara, left, to go share a contract with her. I don’t know if you have shared contracts where you teach, but basically two teachers share one contract and teach part time. So Natalie teaches Mondays, Tuesdays, and every other Wednesday, while Loara teaches Thursdays, Fridays, and the other Wednesdays. It is perfect for moms, and both of these girls are moms of young kids. In fact, Natalie’s daughter started kindergarten at her school this year.
Well, believe it or not, at the end last year, these two got bumped out of their first grade spot.
They were bumped up to fifth grade. They packed up their room, moved to fifth grade, and then later learned that the district was adding a second grade class, and did they want that? Yes, they wanted that. So they packed up their room again, and went back to their old room where they set up for second grade.
They started teaching second grade the week before me because their school wasn’t affected by the Holy Jim Fire.
So they’ve been teaching for four weeks.
And on Wednesday, they were told that their class was being collapsed and that they had to MOVE SCHOOLS.
I read her text and seriously COULD NOT BELIEVE MY EYES
Natalie has been kicked about her entire career in my school district. It is actually like we teach in two different school districts. Because while I’ve been here for 18 years, at the same school, in the same grade, my friend was hired to teach first grade (which she did for two years) and then . . . got bumped to kindergarten which she taught for only two weeks before becoming a K/1 combo class, then bumped to second grade, then bumped to third grade, then bumped to fourth grade, and then bumped RIGHT OUT OF OUR SCHOOL.
And now she’s at this other school which bumped her to fifth, let her go down to second, and then bumped her RIGHT OUT OF THE SCHOOL.
How in the world?! WHAT IN THE WORLD?!
I just want to cry for her. I feel so guilty about my journey when I look at her journey! I wonder why?! WHY?!
So now Loara and Natalie will be teaching kindergarten at another school in our district.
Natalie and Loara had to move out of the classroom AGAIN. If you’re counting, that makes move number three for this year alone.
Our kinder teachers told them come here and we will give you whatever you need.
So they piled up carts with stuff for them.
And then yesterday, a bunch of us went to their school and set up their room.
Loara is front and center and Natalie is on the far right.
I’m not wearing make up so you may not recognize me. 🙂
One of the teachers had left before we took this picture, and we’re all mad we didn’t take before and after pictures, but here we are. One teacher from first, second, third, fourth, and fifth grade came to help them unpack and set up their room. I sent a text out on Friday night saying something along the lines of if you can come help for a bit, we’ll be there between such and such time” and five teachers showed up THE NEXT DAY. At 8am. On a Saturday. In between soccer games and baseball and whatever else everyone had going on.
We killed it.
Their room is ready for 25 new kinders on Monday.
I’m telling you.
The teachers I get to work with are amazing. I am privileged. I have no idea what makes me think I can complain about anything.
I think it speaks volumes when two of our own who haven’t taught with us for two years are bumped to yet another school, and we show up.
I feel like this is exactly what Gerry Brooks was talking about.
We showed up.
And we have some compliment journals going around.
And I have nothing whatsoever to complain about.
So stop me if I even attempt to try!!!
Have a wonderful rest of your Sunday!
Jenny kinser says
We went to see Gerry earlier this summer. He was so inspiring! I love how you joined together for a friend-it kind of happened to us this year. We had a teacher quit on Saturday morning before school started Tuesday. Two retired friends, and our school secretary even joined some of us to set up the room. I wish I had taken a picture!
oh my gosh, same thing happening in my district. Our numbers are down, one of the 8 kinder teachers, yes 8, got bumped to a new school and 5th grade. Her team was helping her move this weekend. Love really does make the world go round and the ride a bit smoother.
Glad our prayers are helping your eyes.
My sister and I saw Gerry last Saturday too! It was held/sponsored by my District – it was amazing and inspiring AND in addition to a he whole “name pronunciation thing”, it was also news to me that he really does speak and pronounce words quite well!
Eek! We went to see Gerry yesterday!!!! I’m still trying to figure out how his name is pronounced “Gary” but spelled like Jerry only with a G! Haha! His presentation was great! He’s such a fun speaker…very inspiring! I love the idea of the compliment journals but worry that some people would be left out or be sad/jealous that others received MANY compliments. Is that weird? So glad you are getting some relief from your floaters. Hopefully you will get some much needed answers on Friday. Saying continued prayers.
Oh my goodness. Those poor teachers need a good union rep. Or a lawyer. How is that even happening? I’m glad you are feeling better about the floaters. I was saying prayers for you in between prayers for my mom. Well, I just learned something today. I thought it was “Jerry” too and I didn’t know he did speaking gigs. I hope he comes up North!
Have a good week Kristen!
I’m glad your floaters are getting better! Have you seen those fluorescent light covers? I bought some on Amazon last year and HOLY COW! Serious decrease in migraines. I get the floater kind so I feel your pain. Might give you some relief?
I have seen those! I should look into them!! 🙂 Thank you!
Kimberly Ann A Schmidt says
We went to see him in Riverside. He was so inspiring. I was supposed to go to the meet and greet, but my GPS took me on a crazy adventure.
I saw him in Riverside, too!!