I have been sitting on this blog post for some time debating to write it or not to and then to publish it or not to. This is not meant as a political post or a place to invoke conflict or fear. I’m hopeful that what I’m about to share will serve as a point of reflection for myself and perhaps others who might be feeling the same.
I have been thinking a lot lately about the current state of the world and the rising tension amongst people, what it all means and how we can continue to navigate through this. When I started writing this, I was really thinking about the pandemic and the freedom convoys that had been taking place across our nation. Now, the addition of the war in Ukraine has taken over my thoughts. Regardless, these are all situations that bring uneasiness and perhaps discomfort to some.
For myself, I have experienced many emotions and my thinking about how to proceed and how not to proceed in my daily life has been challenging particularly when I think about returning to “normal”, deciding whether to let Cady go back to pre-k and thinking about how to protect my 4 month old son. All the while, being an avid believer in the positive impacts of socialization and what we learn when we are immersed with people. Finding balance is challenging. These are my personal struggles at home and then I think about my role as a leader and what struggles exist in teaching others and leading others and how I would navigate through that if I were at school.
Many times over the last month I have asked myself “As a school leader, what would I say to students and staff right now?” I have thought about this question a lot trying to find the right answer and then with help from one of my greatest mentors I realized that the best thing I can do is listen to others, acknowledge their feelings, and then share my thoughts in hopes others will do the same. We don’t have to agree but I think we do owe it to each other to listen and then think.
The biggest thought I can leave you with today is that it is ok to reflect and change your narrative. Just like our first draft of writing is not our final draft, our first draft of thoughts may not be our final draft of thoughts either. Over the years, I am a better person because I listened to others and revised/refined my thinking. Through the most difficult times, I encourage you to do the same. We may not know the answers and that is alright but if we listen to one another, and continually reflect on our conversations with each other I have confidence we will get through this! When we navigate with our hearts – relationships are strengthened, teams are strengthened and we emerge much better off!
On a personal note, remember to look after yourself and take breaks from the heaviness in the world. Just yesterday, I had to make the conscious decision to turn the television off and only check in once in the morning and once in the evening. This is also ok. Take care my friends!
Feel free to leave me a thought, question, or comment. We learn best together!