Wednesday Woes

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Have you ever had one of those days where you can’t do right for doing wrong?

Today, I had to go to our primary school to observe potential students for September.

I should have known when I left the house in the rain. My boots leaked so my feet were soaked by the time I arrived at the bus stop. I then had to wait 30 minutes for a bus.

I was chilled to the bone by the time I arrived but the observations went really well.

Work was another matter lots of moaning behind closed doors and emails flying around.

When I went out to do lunch duty, I wanted to burst into tears. A combination of no sleep and a constant barrage of negativity from colleagues had taken its toll.

At that point one of our lower functioning students grabbed my arm, tapped me and ran away. I realised he wanted me to chase him and we played it for the rest of lunch.

That one moment saved me today. That student who cannot communicate verbally recognised that I needed help and offered it through playing it.

It almost broke my heart. That he had sensed so much and yet, grown adults who should know better didn’t or just ignored.

I had my appraisal, it was very positive.

I got back to my computer and had a number of emails that nearly sent me over the edge.

What upsets me the most, is that I am approachable. I had a meeting with a staff member after school to listen to concerns and offer advice and some practical solutions.

One of the emails was verging on the abusive. The other I was cc’d into about an issue that had not been raised with me and they were going above my head with.

It makes me sad. I have cried this evening out of frustration, disappointment and exhaustion.

The best thing is to get a good night’s sleep and a fresh perspective.

Tomorrow is an early start to travel across London for training.

That student’s kindness will linger with me, it pulled me back from the edge, just enough. Just enough to take a breath and manage the rest of the day.

Two days out and then the weekend will help.

New week, new start from Monday.

I started the day posting:

‘Sometimes the only one to encourage you is you.’

Luckily for me, I had encouragement from another source.

Busyness

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‘Beware the barreness of a busy life.’ Socrates

I read this quote yesterday and it really hit home.

Recently, I have felt quite overwhelmed by the amount of work I seem to have piling up, by the fact I have no free weekends until after Christmas and just by the fact that I don’t feel I have time to breathe.

For the past two days we have had no internet at home. This has meant I have not been able to work at home. It has been unnerving but in a way quite freeing.

Tonight, I even read some of my book we are discussing at book club tomorrow night. I might even get it finished in time.

You see, I have lost perspective, become blinkered and it needs to stop.

At our senior management meeting tonight, I said it as was, said that I was concerned about the lack of evidence I could find of paperwork and  student work. Concerned by the lack of support from staff when there is an incident.

I was listened to. Offered support and strategies and it was recognised that I am constantly problem solving for everyone.

Part of the problem is that I do try to do it all and I can’t. The other thing is, I now need to practice tough love.

This is where I need to work on my courage and strength.

I have been over emotional this week and not myself.

Tomorrow night, I have book club. This is something I started and run to ensure that I remember to still have a life outside of work.

Saturday, I am off to The Southbank to meet friends and go out for lunch.Making sure busyness does not leave me with barreness.

Sunday, I will be at church as Godmother to my friends daughter as she is dedicated. I am still moved and taken a back that I was asked.

Sometimes, I wonder how people do life without church. The support network and depth of relationship I share with people there is something that I could not live without.

The fact that I know I have people upholding me in prayer each day and people checking in on how I am on a daily basis.

Even when it is hard, I know I am not alone.

I will continue fighting the barreness of a busy life.

Teaching Tuesday

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Image courtesy of [Carlos Porto] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Everyone was tired at work today. The Post Parents’ Eve slump had well and truly kicked in.
There were the usual rumblings from people about feeling ill, preparing for days off tomorrow no doubt.

My tolerance levels were low today. My ability to hide behind smiles was pretty much non existent.

My students were aware that all was not right. Sometimes it frightens me how they can read me like a book!

Lunchtime, I played football with some of the boys. These are often some of my favourite moments with the students. Being out of class and having fun. They have accepted I have a level of skill now and let me have a turn in goal!

We had a pilates session after work, first of a series of sessions that have been organised by work to help us manage stress. I am glad I signed up, I think it is going to do me good.

Prior to that, I managed to fit in a twenty minute meeting with a member of staff who needed some reassurance.

Times like this, I get very frustrated with myself. I beat myself up about not doing the best for my students, in that they can pick up on my mood and I am not getting things done at warp speed as usual.

I don’t like having to accept that I have limits. I don’t like having to admit I am human at times.

In my mind, there is always more that I could do.

That’s the thing about teaching. The students get under your skin, they linger in your mind.

I wouldn’t have it any other way. The moment that stops, I know it is time to stop.

Until then, I live to fight another day. Roll on Wednesday, what do you have in store?