Crossing the Finish Line

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Have you ever seen a swarm of kids reaching for a slice of pizza?  The warm, gooey cheese was stretching from their fingers as they pulled their slice from the boxes and ran off with their plates to devour their treat.  We celebrated crossing a finish line today—these students have stayed for an hour after school each day for several months in order to improve their math and reading skills.  Their delight in finishing this challenge (and in eating their pizza) was evident by the smiles on their faces and the bragging they did about their accomplishment.

In thinking about my topic for tonight’s post, which is the last one for the month of March and the Slice of Life Challenge, I kept thinking about how good it will feel to know that I also managed to do something that felt insurmountable and cross a finish line.  I actually wrote a blog post every single day for a whole month!  When I started my blog, coming up with even one idea to write about was a challenge.  I wanted every word and phrase to be perfect, so I overthought and revised, changed my mind and often scrapped an idea.  Writing every day now has pushed me to take a kernel of an idea and run with it, regardless of perfect phrases and profound thoughts.  And now blogging isn’t nearly as scary as it used to be!

On top of that, by joining the Challenge on the Two Writing Teachers website, I opened myself up to sharing my writing with people I didn’t know.  This was also a bit intimidating for me!  But thanks to my beyond wonderful Welcome Wagon commenters, I felt encouraged and a little bit like I had a few new friends.  I am so thankful to each person that read my posts, and I enjoyed each and every comment that was left.  I visited many blogs myself and found that reaching out a little and leaving comments for other writers also stretched me and brought many smiles to my face.  As a newbie, this whole experience has made me grow as a writer and grow in my confidence with sharing my writing and joining in conversations with other writers.  I’m a little bit sorry that it’s over!

Wait…except that I also think it will feel pretty good to cross the finish line and take a little blogging break!  My fingers and brain are tired!  Just a little one, though…

I love the image of crossing a finish line with this last March post because it makes me focus on the joy we feel by accomplishing something new, something hard, something worth doing.  I’m going to keep thinking that way and congratulate others as they do the same!

Thank you so much to Two Writing Teachers for posing this challenge and hosting/organizing all of it!  I have truly felt like I’ve found my writer’s heart home in the community of all who blog and share there.  Thanks also to my Welcome Wagon commenters–you were faithful and encouraging to me every single day.  I looked forward to reading each of your comments and they gave me many a smile throughout the month.  I appreciate the time and effort you took to make sure I felt good about what I wrote!  Not to mention the fact that I must have drawn the two coolest Welcome Wagon teachers ever–both out doing remarkable things in remarkable places around the world.  I admire you both and LOVE hearing about your experiences in different cultures!  You are living out something I have only dreamed of doing–it’s been a joy to “meet” you and connect with you through our blogs.  And also Big Huge Thanks to Fran, who encouraged and helped me start a blog in the first place.  You inspire me daily with your writing and writing processes, Fran!  You spread the joy of reading and writing wherever you go, and it makes such a positive impact on all who read your words!

And with that, it’s time to cross the finish line…

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Hey…do I get some pizza now, too???

 

 

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5 comments

  1. ericamcmo · April 1, 2016

    This is such a wonderful reflection. You captured many of the emotions that I also feel as a first-time participant in this challenge. Congratulations to you!

    Like

  2. mrssurridge · April 1, 2016

    I’m super glad that, as a first timer, it sounds like you had a great experience! Congratulations on the accomplishment!

    Like

  3. Erika Victor · April 1, 2016

    Yahoo to you! You are a writer, no doubt about it. It was so fun to get to know you a via your words. Your posts were so varied and complete. I really hope you will continue slicing each Tuesday! Sending you Pad Thai (in Bangkok right now and Pad Thai is more readily available than pizza and offers you a mix of flavors and textures, like your writing. Okay, you can also have mango sticky rice in appreciation for your kind words). Happy writing!

    Like

  4. Fran · April 1, 2016

    Pizza, ice cream, Pad Thai – Congratulations and do take time to celebrate. Writing every day for 31 days is an accomplishment. Every time you get ready to push the publish button, there’s a little “argh” in your throat or stomach that goes with that “Is this good enough?” Imagine what it is like for our students . . . “Is it good enough, teacher?”

    Super reflection and I’m so glad you took the leap of faith and blogged all month, Slicer, YOU!

    Like

  5. Kristi Lonheim (@lonheim) · April 26, 2016

    Congratulations on making it through your first March SOLSC! Enjoy your ‘pizza’.

    Like

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