Monthly Archives: September 2012

Listen to Your Body!

Please do as I say and not as I do.  I made the mistake of pushing myself this week when I knew I wasn’t one hundred percent. I had a NASTY migraine and took my medication on Thursday night then proceeded to chaperone my son’s high school band schlepping water up and down stairs, carrying a box of plumes for the halftime show, and walking hither and yon.  My back rebelled like it never has before, and it was hard for me to catch my breath.  I went home that night and went to bed figuring that Friday would be better.   Ha ha! The day started well, and I dropped by the clinic to visit with our fabulous nurse to let her know I’d felt odd the night before but felt I would be all right. Right at the end of my second double-block class, I began to feel badly, and during my last double-block class of the day, I could barely breathe in because the muscles in my back constricted so much that I couldn’t catch my breath.  Yergh!  Thank goodness, I had already asked my wonderful teaching partner to teach the class while I ran crowd control.  The assistant principal’s secretary came in to cover my class as they finished their quizzes, and I staggered to the clinic and laid down.  Less than ten minutes found my husband at my school with me sobbing in his arms like a baby.  When I hurt, I really hurt, and you can tell I don’t fake my pain.  I came home and went to bed with a heating pad on my back.

Today dawned brightly even with the cloud cover and light rain.  I feel much better than yesterday and took some meds to help manage the back pain issues.  I’ll have to sign off soon so I don’t mess up and overdo again.  The moral of this story is to listen to your body.  When you are tired, take a nap.  When you feel sick, go home as soon as possible.  When you have a problem, let someone know who can take care of you or do something about it.  I am truly blessed to have Earth angels who smooth my path and make life so much richer.  I am indebted to these people and pray for the LORD to bless them as they have blessed me.  Signing off for now.  ¡Ciao!

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Time to Recharge

The second week of the school year is done, and I feel moreso like I am back in my element.  The first week can be exhausting even to a veteran, and my heart especially goes out to new teachers whether taking over their first class or starting again in a new district.  It can be disconcerting to be the “new kid on the block” at times when you don’t understand the native culture of your campus or district.  I am teaching in my fifth district, and I can tell you that when you start in a new district with a new preparation/curriculum/team mates, it is mentally and physically exhausting.  So what do you do?

1.  Make sure to take one afternoon off from grading, lesson plan writing, etc. to have some me-time.  This could be a bubble bath, a visit to the library or book store, a manicure/pedicure, or quite simply a nap with the phones off to recharge your batteries.

2.  Talk to your best friends and make plans to spend some time with them even if it’s a quick cup of coffee at Starbucks.

3.  Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day, and your students won’t learn everything you want them to in one lesson or perhaps class period.  It takes time.

4.  Learning something new means great successes and some bumps along the road.  I am still learning about my students’ work habits and their personalities. They do not come with operation manuals or instructions.  A lot of my insight comes from watching closely and listening carefully.  I utilize body language to help me figure out if my young charge is receptive to my words or not.

5.  Anyone who tells or implies to you that you must be perfect all of the time is not realistic.  We have emotions that sometimes bubble to the surface despite our efforts to maintian a professional face.  Some kids’ personalities will grate against yours.  Some kids will remind you of that person who bugged you in class, but they have different names and faces than your former classmates.  This is normal.

6.  Eat healthy foods that are good for you as often as you are able.  I’ve done the drive-thru routine when necessary, but nothing quite tastes homemade like homemade.  Visiting the produce section of the grocery store to pick up  a salad and fixings is good to do.

7.  Drink your water to keep hydrated.  I’ve been known to take water bottles with me and keep myself hydrated.  Some of my colleagues carry their own plastic permanent water bottle or cup to keep track of how many glasses per day they drink.

8.  Take your vitamins daily!  When it’s cold and flu season, load up on the vitamin C, and sanitize your desks, door knobs, and counter tops.  Trying to plan for a sub when you can hardly breathe due to congestion is misery.

9.  Make sure to take a personal day each semester.  I take my mother to the annual ‘Neath the Wreath, a Junior League function, to shop for Christmas decor and spend the day together just having fun on our own schedule.

10.  Enjoy your vacation time with your family and friends.  Remember that you have hobbies and interests outside of teaching.  Share about your hobbies and interests as appropriate with your students, but let them know you are a real person, too.

I am sure that something else will come to mind along this same vein, but for now, I bid you good day.  ¡Ciao!

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