So I think we can all agree that yesterday’s post was a bit depressing.  This morning I was determined to move on to bigger and better things.  I dropped my husband off at work and continued on my way to school, blasting a new song a dear friend sent my way a few days ago.  There have been a few sad unmentioned-on-this-blog things that have happened at school lately and I needed my drive to work to sing it out and, consequently, cry it out.  So that happened.

And then I witnessed a car accident right in front of my face.  While I was stopped in traffic the car crash literally happened right in front of me and my hands ended up covering my face, begging the Universe to let the people be okay.  Thankfully everyone was okay.  I pulled over, called school to tell them I’d be late, called 911 and gave my statement to police once they arrived.  The day’s first hurdle over, I got back into my car and made it to school right before first bell.

I was feeling rather frazzled as I pulled into the school’s parking lot, but one colleague at school wisely suggested I use my morning’s experience as our advisory discussion.  So I did.  I shared with my students what I witnessed only 40 minutes before and my goodness, were they ever concerned, attentive and alert.  We morphed into a conversation about “being the better person” (their “thinking homework” I assigned them after yesterday’s incident), which turned into a conversation about what we are proud of lately.  I had my students write down how they can be better humans and what they are proud of lately on slips of paper and then I collected their notes and read them out one at a time.

Here are a few examples.
Here are a few examples.

A few more examples:

“I’m proud that I’m the only female guard member (people in cadets who march with guns) because the other girls were too nervous to join”.

“I’m proud of getting on the competitive team in volleyball!”

“I placed top 5 in biathlon regionals”.

“I can be a better rugby player by taking in advice and when someone corrects me, don’t take it as an insult but rather a compliment to do better”.

“I’m proud of how I’m always there when my friend needs me”.

“I am proud for making the right choice [and for] sticking up for what I believe in”.

Needless to say, my teacher heart cracked open and let the love in again.  As I read out everyone’s statements the smiles, cheers and claps filled the classroom with pure, awesome joy.  I looked around the room and said to my students, “See…you ARE good, caring, amazing people.  It’s just sometimes you make choices that aren’t the greatest, and that’s okay because we learn from those mistakes, like we are doing right now, and then we move forward”.  (I just finished telling my mom this story on the phone and her response was, “Wow”.  I replied, “I know right? They don’t teach you how to deal with this kinda stuff at Uni…it’s nuts, Mom!”)

I also participated in the “What are you proud of” activity with my class.  I am proud of my running.  I run when I don’t want to and I stick to my training schedule even though I’m exhausted by the end of the week.  I’m proud of myself because my dedication to running is starting to show; today after school I ran a new 5k personal best (25min38sec).  That’s a 5min02sec avg pace, in case you were wondering.  Which leads me to my women who will represent kilometers 4, 5 and 6 of my half marathon:

Camille: My former rhythmic gymnastics coach turned close friend.  Camille knows me better than many people.  She's been in my life for 18 years and she's truly taught me the value of hard work.  I give Camille a LOT of credit for all my life's successes thus far.  Love you!
Kilometer 4 goes to Camille: My former rhythmic gymnastics coach turned close friend. Camille knows me better than many people. She’s been in my life for 18 years and she’s truly taught me the value of hard work. I give Camille a LOT of credit for all my life’s successes thus far. Love you!
Kilometer 6 goes to Naomi, affectionately known as MaiMai in our house.  Mai and I have been friends for a handful of years.  She constantly inspires me to work harder at my fitness and my nutrition.  Mai is also one of THE most go-getter young women I know.  You'll be hearing more from her tomorrow!
Kilometer 5 goes to Naomi, affectionately known as MaiMai in our house. Mai and I have been friends for a handful of years. She constantly inspires me to work harder at my fitness and my nutrition. Mai is also one of THE most go-getter young women I know. You’ll be hearing more from her tomorrow!
Kilometer 6 goes to Nadine.  Nadine was my Vice Principal last year and has turned into a dear friend.  When I need solid teacher advice I know I can go to Nadine with questions at any hour.  Kilometer 6 in my long runs is when I usually start feeling warmed up and ready to rock, so Nadine, because you have helped launch my teaching career in such an amazing way, you're going to launch my first half-marathon too! Much love.
Kilometer 6 goes to Nadine, my dear friend who gave me this card at New Year 2014.  She told me that every time I look at this card I can be reminded of my strengths, so I tacked it up by my desk at school (don’t mind the appendix!) When I need solid teacher advice I know I can go to Nadine with questions at any hour. Kilometer 6 in my long runs is when I usually start feeling warmed up and ready to rock, so Nadine, because you have helped launch my teaching career in such an amazing way, you’re going to launch my first half-marathon too! Much love.

 

Karley