Tag Archives: purpose

2020 vs 2021

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2020 was the year of being stuck. It even shows it in the numbers…not going up, not going down…stuck with two of the same numbers: 2020. Stuck at home, stuck out of the gym, stuck out of the bar…stuck without family. Stuck!

So here we are in 2021 and I would like to believe this is the year of moving forward, making progress taking the next step…it is even in the numbers as well. What comes after 20? 21! Turning a new year does not magically change things in our lives, but it gives us new hope and new vision and I pray that for all reading this, 2021 gives you more of the good stuff.

I pray it gives more opportunities, more clarity and more more promise of the good things yet to come. For me, that is more therapy in the areas I need to develop new habits and mindsets; More working out and putting into my body the fuel that sustains. More quality time with the relationships that feed what is good, noble, honest and true. Finally, more falling in love with my Creator and King. More knowing who He is and how He created me to serve Him.

The year of 2020 had great purpose in our stuckness…but 2021 is of great significance too! No accident the numbers fall in line in an order of progression. It is time…progress is waiting!

New Year Resolutions: Hype or Happiness?

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My Facebook feed is full of Resolutions, Vision Boards, Goal setting and so much more to welcome in the New Year.  I love a good goal setting party and I especially love having a plan, but reading these exhaust me each year and I have been trying to understand why.

Here are some ideas:

I am a quitter so I quit even before I start? (Enneagram 9 problems)

It exhausts me to plan for all that work.

Jealousy for that kind of vision.

I think for me it hypes up the I will, the I want, and the Someday leaving behind the right now. (This is also why I cannot do Pinterest.)  I know we all need vision and goals for many jobs, projects and ideas, but I want to live my life in the present.  I refuse to miss out on the many moments of now.  All of this writing will be frowned upon by many successful people including the great Rachel Hollis that has built her empire on goals, visions and more.  I cannot wrong them as they are sitting in private jets while I am behind this outdated computer, but I want contentment.  I want to be a visionary while appreciating the magic of today.  I choose to celebrate the new year with a new word and a new saying to live by.

Previous words and years:

Do it afraid.  Do not let your fear be greater than your faith.  Change is an opportunity to do something amazing. Wherever you are, be all there.

The words that went with these sayings were balance, faith, fearlessness, presence and selfless.

This year my big word is VULNERABLE with the saying “What you know matters, who you are MATTERS MORE.

I want my year, my experiences, my adventures to be full of connectedness, whole-heart and all-in kinda-live-in-the-moment opportunities. Vulnerable is hard for me since it can be seen as weakness, but I see it as courage to put myself out there and really feel.  No holding back. I always say that I do not choose the word-it chooses me.  God plants a seed and then I wait and listen until he speaks up to confirm.  I thought at one time it was journey, but then the V word just kept popping back up until I finally surrendered.

So good for you if you can handle the resolutions and goals of tomorrow.  Not knocking the idea, but just saying it does not work for me.  I do have all the supplies for a vision board that may someday come to life, but for now I am excited about what being vulnerable in my relationships and moments of now might bring.  For my first vulnerable step of 2020, I upgraded this blog to a premium site!  It may not bring me any more traffic, likes or comments, but I feel it validates (another v word) that I want this to be more than just for myself. So I am putting my words out there to see what might happen.

Happy 2020!

Urban to Rural…year one done!

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Last year, I made a big career move by switching from Mesquite ISD to Crandall ISD. Big move meaning less pay, less resources, went from 34 elementary schools in the district to 4, went from a support role with less stress to the classroom which meant more preparation…a lot of change! Now that the year is over I can say it was the right move, but I still miss Mesquite greatly; it was my home and still where I feel the most me.

But looking back here is a list of some of the biggest changes:

1. Resources- no printer in my room, a rough curriculum that was new, no chart paper readily available, one person was the go to for all the curriculum needs vs having department heads. All of this obviously due to size…this district is growing, but some of these perks are not needed yet.

2. Freedom- freedom to make your plans as you see fit, to try new ideas, to leave on time, to focus on teaching and not testing. Returning to the classroom could have only been done if I could reduce the stress and this district was the answer.

3. Respect-at my campus families still respect the profession. Behavior was awesome because parents would punish if not. Parent phone calls made a difference; the student behavior was to blame and not the teacher. The community valued the profession…lots of respect for this passion I pursue.

4. Pride- Mesquite has pride, but with so many schools that pride is spread out. So many great schools leads for lots of ways to shine which Mesquite often will, but this small town vibe sends all their students to one high school which leads to one big ball of CHS pride. I will love this in the future when I want to see former students and know where to find them.

5. Purpose- there is purpose at both but in Mesquite I knew mine daily. There you are more than a teacher..you are life. More is expected of you emotionally and spiritually. Your coworkers are your soldiers fighting the urban education battle of poverty with you. I was emotionally fatigued daily but I was needed, changing lives and doing the impossible daily. 

6. Connection..this will be the last reflection, but the smaller district gets you connected quicker.  We meet as a whole district to cheer each other on, parades and pep rallies are attended by the town, Friday night lights is a thing, the admin knows you by name and make sure to address your concerns…the lack of Title One money means there is not as much stuff, but the relationship of knowing who you are is powerful.

The purpose one often has me question if I will return to Mesquite or at least a campus in this district that is more needy..maybe even middle school someday, but for now I am trying to remember I did my 14 years in the trenches and it is now time to see a different side. Still tough, still needed, still so much work but with some benefits so I do not get burnt out. 

I am especially excited because my son comes to school with me next year!

Hard to believe this baby is now five!

If you are thinking about switching districts, my advice is think about the location, money and then your health. Decide what you can balance.  I am fortunate we could take the pay cut. The new location limits us since my family and our activities are in Mesquite plus Crandall is limited on food and shopping. We drive a lot, but at least not in the morning like I used to do for two years commuting to work. Being in the classroom is long hours, but adding driving time means you are away from home even more.  For me, it came down to health. Even when I was crying because I missed my support system and school where I was known and loved…I knew I was healthier because I was less stressed and had help when I needed it. Lupus is a disease triggered by stress and I need the less stress possible. Being in the classroom filled my passion, but it also brought back work only a classroom teacher could know. 

Health won.

I encourage you to pray to God about where he can use you and then obey. When it is all happening then you will have peace if you are in his will. Even during the tough times then you will know God led you here and He is with you. 

New Normal Update

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One of my last posts, I mentioned my husband considering leaving the police force. The pic above was his last day on the job. He officially resigned in October and began his new job in medical sales in November.

Pros: works M-F, off on weekends and holidays, he has a normal routine, his body is rested, we can make plans as a family, good pay and benefits.

Cons: he sells hospice so he deals with death daily, the medical field can be daunting, his company is having some growing pains, we lost our fun summer days together, he cannot see him doing this the next ten years.

So although on most levels, things are better…he still has not found what he is looking for in life. Amazing how he can do 10 years in one field, but not even get to one in another.  It all comes down to purpose and I pray he finds his.