Stressed, but Blessed

imageToday was one of those days.  I knew it would be, and I tried to prepare myself.  But when the alarm went off at too-early-o’clock in the morning, I mentally groaned.  It was a collaboration day at one of my schools, which meant that teachers would arrive in shifts to do some professional reading and talk about their work with conferring in their classrooms.  I had been excited all week for this day to come, with its opportunities to sit down for a block of time and dig deep with discussions about one of my favorite topics.  I knew, however, that it was going to be intense…and it was.

Kids were misbehaving in the hallway.  Teachers were stressed about being ready for their sub.  People were swarming around the meeting room.  A new family arrived to register their students for Monday.  Conversations went off track.  There were even a few tears shed over a conflict that seemed unsolvable.  I found myself taking notes, answering questions, explaining and clarifying goals, finding resources in online, and adding item after item to my coaching “to do” list.  But in the midst of all the chaos, I looked up and caught my principal’s eye…and he was looking over the room and smiling for all he was worth.  “This is IT!” he whispered to me.  “This is exactly how it should be for collaboration.  Just listen to them!”

And he was right.  Teachers were tossing ideas back and forth and debating how best to work with their kids.  They were asking tough questions and trying to answer them in the same breath.  They were arguing about what doesn’t work for them and trying to design something that would.  And they were giving me the chance to work alongside them through it all. I realized in that moment that I was letting myself get so caught up in the stressed feeling of making this day run smoothly that I wasn’t catching the blessed part.

Every teacher that gives me a chance to work alongside her in the classroom is a blessing.  It’s a gift I don’t take lightly.   Each request for more materials, new books to share, or information to deepen understanding is a blessing, even if it means I need to add more pages to my to-do list.  I love researching those things for teachers!  And I am thankful for every day that can be spent working with people who love doing what they do even when it’s hard.  It’s very easy to get caught up in the details of the day or to let the commotion of life make its noise in my head.  I’m so thankful that today I found the way to stop the stressing and feel the blessing!




  1. travelinma · March 4, 2016

    Great phrase-too early o’clock. I’ll have to remember that! Passion melts obstacles doesn’t it. Best wishes to your staff in their journey to be the best on behalf of kids.


  2. Tara · March 4, 2016

    I love this, and I feel like it came at just the right time! I used to work on a team with a few other teachers who loved getting any additional help/assistance/information. Not so much right now. It just seems like extra work or stress. And while I said I’d be happy to have anyone in my room, I’ve been feeling the stress part of it and not taking what I could. Thanks for the reminder!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. franmcveigh · March 5, 2016

    It is ALL about perspective. Pausing, taking a deep breath . . . anything that lets the frustration out and allows the beauty of the moment in – Truly Blessed! Your teachers are also very fortunate! ❤

    Such a thought-filled post!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. shellymkeller · March 5, 2016

    You sound like that you are so dedicated to your teachers. They are lucky to have you.!


  5. Lisa · March 5, 2016

    I often feel this way during and after PD sessions, but a little bit of time later it all comes together and I am able to actually use what I learned! I love the way you captures this. Too stressed to see you were blessed.. aren’t we all sometimes?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Erika Victor · March 5, 2016

    Great that you have a principal who appreciates and recognizes real collaboration. It is often messy (and noisy). Thank you for capturing this moment. Your teachers are lucky to have your support and you are all lucky to have each other on the journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Kristi Lonheim (@lonheim) · March 5, 2016

    I am with Erika, how fabulous to have a principal that recognizes what true collaboration looks like. I am glad they were able to help you shift your focus and see the earth being churned and seeds being planted. It is so true that teachers spend so much energy prepping for a sub and wondering/worrying about what is (or isn’t) going on their rooms when they are out. Another thing to consider is that it sounds like teachers were so engaged, once they got into the room, that those things were left behind and they were able to be present for the work of collaboration. Gifts indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

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