Teaching in a Pandemic (I CanNOT Survive This Twice)

Being a teacher this year has been one of the hardest experiences I have ever had to push myself through. I have written a bit on here about my journey being a 7th grade English teacher this year, amidst virtual learning, then hybrid learning, and now still hybrid but really like 80% face-to-face and 20% virtual.

Every part of this year has been so difficult. Let’s break it down.

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2020: A Year of Self-Reflection

Even though I haven’t blogged regularly this year, I have had a post like this on my mind for the last week or so. I feel like I’ve spent many days of my Christmas vacation thinking about everything that has happened this year, for better or worse (mostly worse). 2020 was a hard year for everyone (my therapist reminds me weekly: “it’s not just you, Danielle”).

I actually spent some time yesterday rereading my journal (which I started regularly writing in in July). I had mentioned to my therapist I was afraid to read a lot of what was in there because it was so raw. There were a lot of emotions behind those entries…MY emotions. Rather, as she said (seriously how does she know everything), it gave me a chance to look back on all the challenges I pushed through this year and the progress I’ve made.

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Good Enough -a poem-

What is good enough?
Who sets the bar?
How do we know how much,
how big, or how far?

If I create the line,
then where does it stop?
Because I have so much trouble
with needing to be on top.

I struggle with lowering
the expectations I have set,
and if I miss out on something,
I’ll be stuck with the regret.

Everyday I find myself
more and more stressed out.
Everyday I’m closer and closer
to a full breakdown.

I never feel I’m good enough
for all the praise I get,
but I’m recognizing more
that it’s a flaw in my mindset.

I have to find a goal
that I can strive to achieve,
then NOT move the bar up again.
Only then, will I believe:

I am good enough.

On Being Hard On Yourself

After leaving a meeting that I joined into even though I had to take the day off today, I sat here at my desk recognizing that I am literally my own worst critic. Honestly, I already knew that, but I feel like I need to keep saying it out loud to fully accept it as the truth. It’s a mindset I do not wish upon anybody, because in my mind, I am never good enough.

I strive and strive to be the best at what I’m doing. Weirdly, this does not affect me in all parts of my life. I never strived to be the best in sports – I was okay with being good enough. I never strived to be the best in school – C’s get degrees, baby. I never strived to be the best, most successful sibling/family member/friend, etc.

For me, I strive to be the best in my career: I’m a 7th grade ELAR teacher who is struggling through every part of this school year.

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