Celebrating Christine Day

Admittedly, I was inspired by a Walmart commercial where a mom takes her kids to Walmart to get her kids ready for the first day of school. Then the kids ask about the “other days” such as PJ day, things that start with P day, invisible day, etc. It’s pretty humorous but sometimes it feels that way. There seems to be a day for everything.

I am announcing or identifying August 8th as “Christine Day.” It might be a day that I celebrate for myself by myself, but on August 8, 2022, I felt like myself. This sounds like the weirdest thing to say but I feel pretty good about where I am, how I feel, who I’m with, where I live, and what I get to do for a living and for fun. Life is good. 🙂

Saying that “life is good” is something that I would say before with hope that life will be good. Now being the day after Christine Day, I feel like I am in a good place and LIFE IS GOOD. Gosh. This is a new feeling for me. I am good with who I am and I’m not second guessing about what people think and what I’m expected to do or say.

I can take ownership of my actions (or inaction). I’m not scared or worried. I can be my whole self and feel good about it. I cannot believe it has taken this much time to get to the inaugural Christine Day but I also believe that everything happens for a reason and this was the journey I had to take so far to get to this point in my life.

What I do understand is that this is not the end of my journey, but it is definitely a new beginning that I am stoked to get started with. I am in control and I feel like I am in control. I can honour and respect myself and make good decisions for me. I will continue to be in service to others, but not at my expense or to impress others.

The pandemic offered me the time, space, and place to reflect and define what’s important to me. I am so happy to be with and live with my kid. I am happy that I am able to support her in her studies and be in the same place where I work. I have redefined what my work will look like and it feels great. And, I love where I am.

My mind, heart, and spirit are ready for the next chapter and the upcoming school year. Lots of changes on the horizon and I am ready. One step at a time and I can be patient. Progress is what matters. The product will come. I trust all will be well. I am super excited to pivot and embrace what’s to come (whatever it may be). Yay me!

Feeling Intentional

Week 125 – August 5, 2022 – The Dust has Settled

Gosh. It’s the end of another week and the summer is almost over. Time is flying by but I am savouring every moment to rest, reflect, and goal set. I am glad to be back in Prince George from my Prince Rupert and the Lower Mainland trips. I was working during this time, but also resting and slowing down. I loved my forest bathing experience, as mentioned in my last blog post, and how I am feeling more intentional with my next steps in life. I am no longer a “floating blob” (a term that I have coined during my forest bathing experience), but I am listening to myself and intuition.

Although I could feel guilty about taking my work day a bit more slowly over the last month, but I am tying up loose ends and making plans for the upcoming year. I am forming boundaries for myself and my work, and identifying what’s important to me and make a commitment in meeting those needs so that my cup is full as I head toward the fall term. I don’t want to question myself or hypothesize what people want from me. I want to move in ways that make me happy and learning as I do. I am an experiential learner and that has not changed. I am practical, pragmatic, and love human connection. For example, today I had coffee and chats with my friends.

Who I connect with are people whom I can be authentic with. I will always remain professional with my colleagues, students, and co-workers, but want to delve deep into interests with folks who I can feel wholehearted with. I love the people whom I connected with on my trips and today for coffee. I even had a phone call today with my edu-buddy to. I have made changes to my job and letting go of what was and looking forward to what will be. I am clear about what I want to accomplish and I knowing this will helps me to create boundaries with others, my work, and myself.

With this clarity, I can be more intentional and take ownership for my actions. In past, I was more focused with what I thought others expected from me. I was looking to belong or I engaged in opportunities not knowing where it would lead me. I think that’s ok, but now I am feeling like I am in control. As I have been told by several mentors… “the only person who will take care of you is you”… “you need to be selfish to get ahead”… and “research or writing is ME TIME.” It has taken some time to fully understand what each of these people were trying to tell me and what I have realized is, I have to prioritize myself and by doing so I am honouring and valuing who I am.

I spent most of my life stepping back, serving others, or pretending to be someone I am not. I have landed. I understand now what I value, what interests me, and what I want to pursue. Signing a 3-year contract and my kid going to school in Prince George for her post-secondary studies, I am exactly where I want to be. I have a place to live, I’m with my kid, and I have a job that gives me the freedom, autonomy, and agency I deeply desire. I love to teach. I get super excited about learning. And, I am heading into the unknown and uncertain world of research and I need to vulnerable to do so.

I am excited. I am so grateful for people’s mentorship, the work and patience of my coach and therapist, and the unconditional love of my kid. I am surrounded by good people and I can make the most of every moment. I choose to be here. Yay for me!

Figuring Things Out

Week 124 – July 29, 2022 – Informed by Travel

I’ve been travelling around BC over the last week. Last weekend I was with my family (i.e., my dad, sister, and twin bro) and we travelled to our “hometown” of Prince Rupert. My brother and I were born and raised there. My parents and my sister immigrated into Canada from Hong Kong when my sister was 2-years old. We had lots of memories. My dad had some difficulties remembering some things. It must have been another lifetime for him. Some things changed radically (i.e., the pulp mill, the Port, and schools) while other things stayed the same (i.e., our houses, city hall, the public library, and Civic Centre). We were not visiting people, but bumped into a few. It happens when you are in a small town. Many recognized my brother. LOL.

Going to Prince Rupert was an excellent trip. My sister, brother, and dad never thought they would return to Rupert, but happy that they did. It was good closure for my family and what my dad recognized were the changes in community. When we graduated from high school and my parents moved to China then to Burnaby, BC, it was the height of Prince Rupert’s population and livelihood. Natural resources like pulp and paper and the canneries were at its peek and my grad class was the largest. Now the city is about 60% of what it was and new areas like Cow Bay changes the personality and rhythm of the community. My brother noticed that who we are was influenced by our experience in Prince Rupert. People are nice and friendly. My sister loved visiting the public library, her first and favourite job. They were celebrating their Centennial and had posters ups… and my sister was there! Lots of memories.

I loved visiting places like WestEnd Restaurant and having a HUGE chow mein bun. I think things like that are funny and I enjoyed staying at the Crest Hotel. We say three canoes launch (during the fishing derby) with youth and talked to the community. I enjoyed being in community and feeling like “we were at home” (as my sister said) and yet being visitors to this land. On our first day, an Indigenous person approached us as the sunken gardens and pointed out an eagle’s nest to us. Are we tourists? Yes we were. I loved the Northern Pacific Cannery and the Museum of Northern British Columbia. I appreciated the history and the storytelling. I used to work and the museum and enjoyed the gift shop to get souvenirs that would fit into my backpack. It was good to return home and I anticipate, unlike my family, to be back here soon.

Upon my return to Prince George, we did a quick turnaround to drive to the Lower Mainland. I enjoyed being back in Prince George. It’s my new home and I have very little desire to return back to the Sunshine Coast. Much like my family with Prince Rupert, the Sunshine Coast was another lifetime. I’ve turned to a new page and I am happy about where I am (at least enjoying the journey so far). In the Lower Mainland, I wanted to create a little vacation for myself. First of all, my kid is a good driver. Wow. Driving long distances is not my strength. I do prefer the plane. LOL. That said, I am happy to have my vehicle to explore place. I have a different kind of freedom with my car. I booked a couple of motels… one in Burnaby and the other in Harrison Hot Springs. It’s a super hot week and I am appreciating the air conditioning.

The photo above shows an image of a tree in Stanley Park. It was a gorgeous tree. I won this experience via Instagram (and did not realize it was a contest). Serendipity works in mysterious ways. We sat near this tree and in the shade. The experience happened exactly the way it should in terms of people, place, and land. I loved slowing down (even more) to listen to and be informed by the forest and trees. It was a beautiful complement to the Museums I visited in Prince Rupert and the Sacred Journeys exhibit at Science World (I went to the day before). Forest bathing at Stanley Park was amazing. It was exactly what I needed. I learned about stillness, connection, and interconnection. I made deliberate choices and the forest had the answers. There is a level of trust, openness, and vulnerability required to really listen to what your body is saying. I am still reflecting on these messages but super happy I went.

My mini work/play holiday concludes at Harrison Hot Springs. I’m not sure what inspired me to make this trip. A part of me wanted to be by the water and another part of me wanted to return to places in a conscious and purposeful way. I’ve been her a few times, but I was more like a “floating blob” (a term I used at forest bathing) versus a person moving forward, like the roots of a tree, with intention and purpose. I’m here looking at this place with different eyes and I am brought back to this image during forest bathing about the roots of a tree. The first activity at forest bathing was breathing and mediation and one of the images provoked was the roots of a tree. What do the roots do when faced with an obstacle? Damn. It just goes somewhere else and takes a different path or direction. A big aha for me. Why keep trying to move through the rock when you can go around it? Here at the hot springs, I’m feeling the same way. I needed to come this place to realize what I don’t want.

The lessons continued at forest bathing with two more invitations. One was to focus on movement and the second on community. This tree in this picture above taught me so much. I was focused on the motion of the leaves of the tree and its branches; and then the trunk of the tree. What I have realized at that time was how there are different communities and different people within each community. Find your people and know that in this place, every person is doing their own thing and what they are doing does not determine your value or contributions to the community. Do you own thing. Acknowledge it and embrace it. You are the only person to make who you are, but know that you are contributing and have value. Your community has your back. Being at Harrison Hot Springs is nice, but this is not my place. I am thankful to be in Prince George and to be in a place and with people who have my back. I have met some pretty amazing people who all do different things and we are interconnected.

I can see this now. I can see my value and my worth. I can contribute in ways that are aligned to who I am and what’s important to me. ALIGNMENT has been always something that I’ve been looking for and I believe that I am arriving. It’s never perfect and I love positioning myself as a learner (not a knower). I don’t have to be with “the cool kids” (aka. The Cedar Trees at Stanley Park during my forest bathing session) but I can belong to a tree (or community) that I choose and I belong to (for me and we). It’s so interesting that I’ve spent most of my life trying to be someone else or being someone who I perceive other people want me to be. I’m not that person. I am me.

An Ordinary Day

Week 123 – July 21, 2022 – Creating a New Identity

OK. I’m writing this blog post the day after. Time is flying by and I had a wonderful day yesterday on the 21st. It was an ordinary day. I got up. Showered. Made a cup of coffee and got on with my day. It was a full day. I helped my kid with her schooling and paying tuition, I went to a meeting online, and got my new computer deployed and installed at work. My kid took me out for dinner and it was an awesome day.

I feel great at about my research agenda. I bumped into a colleague at work and asked her a question about some wonderings about my potential research and I was looking for some clarity and confirmation. Guess what? I got it. I was so happy. It was the biggest gift I got that day. No wait… my kid bought my dinner. No wait… I had a great meeting. No wait… my new computer is going to make me a better person.

What I did realize today is, this day was my former wedding anniversary. I celebrated my relationship and marriage for several decades on this day, July 21st, and now it’s just an ordinary day. It feel good. I am me. It’s difficult to describe, but I feel liberated. I am giving myself permission and grace to be me and it feels great. I am open and willing to receive what the universe has to offer. I feel lucky that this is my day.

I am looking at my 13-year old self. Who am I and what’s important to me? Looking back at my true self is difficult because I have to relearn who that person is and have the strength to give myself the space and time to develop that person. I am learning what I love to do and what brings me joy. I am also recognizing what does not bring me joy and taking that moment to say goodbye and letting it go wholeheartedly.

I am entering a new chapter in my life. I’ve been entering or awhile but today I feel like I have landed and feel firm in my stance. I am standing tall and it feels good. I am feeling rested, restored, and rejuvenated. I am in a good place and I am grateful. My family just asked me today if I loved my job, where I lived, and the people in my community. I answered yes to all three questions. This was a revelation. Yay me.

Be Yourself and Feel Good

Week 122 – July 15, 2022 – Authenticity & Integrity

What an interesting week and I’m feeling good. Although I have not officially signed my contract yet, I am already working as if I am and enjoying every minute of it. I am happy to be returning back to the university for three more years and I wanted to start this new contract with a new lens and a fresh start. For the last 122 weeks of the pandemic, I’ve been wrestling with the idea of what’s important to me and my why.

My why has not changed. It refines itself as I gain clarity about what’s important to me and what I would like to do with my life and and career. Admittedly, I love living with my kid. Although she is a full human being (i.e., 19-years old), I love that we can live and learn together. She has been a strength to me and she is a huge part of my why. Most recently, she got accepted into a post-secondary program in Prince George.

In a couple of weeks, we would have officially lived in Prince George for a whole year. So much have changed for both of us during this year and its been a privilege and gift that I had a chance to be with her again (as her mom) and I love the person she is becoming. I cannot wait until she goes into her program full-time in the fall and I am proud of her. She completed some coursework this year and worked full-time.

Knowing that my kid will be in Prince George for the next 4-years, I can support her as her parent with room and board (and be her mom). I can help with tuition and she’s got scholarships and bursaries as well as having RRSP’s. I can support her here. This is a good feeling and plays a role in why I am looking forward to the next 3-years at the university. There is excellent leadership and I have redesigned my job/work.

What I know for sure is, I’m good at teaching and I love learning from my students and my practice. My why is focused on creating learning experiences to help learners self-actualize their strengths to contribute in ways that will change the world in a positive way. I am tapping into my why when I teach students, but I am a learner too. I need to create learning experiences for me as well to self-actualize my strengths.

I am no longer the B.Ed. Coordinator and I am teaching 8 classes this upcoming year. Over the last 2-weeks, I noticed the silence, my workload, and my ability to think more clearly. I can rest, read, and write. This way of being is amazing. I realized that my practice is my research and I have lots of content. This knowing is heartwarming. I feel so lucky to do what I do and I can be who I am… wholeheartedly. It feels great.

The Art of Rest

Week 121 – July 9, 2022 – A slow start to a good day

The weekly pandemic reflection persists as we continue to “live with” the pandemic. Just the other day, my friend advised me to wear my mask at work because the third wave of the Omicron variant was on the rise in BC. I get this. Luckily for the next two months I will not be teaching in person. I have a few online sessions and that’s it.

The next two months (before the fall session) are dedicated to writing. I hope I can live up to this personal promise. It’s taken me the last 4-years to get a relatively good understanding what higher education requires from me. It’s like getting a degree in life. That’s how long it took. No one says what it really is, until you learn it yourself.

Looking at the date, I have less than 1.75 months left to write. I spent the first year figuring out the inferno I walked into and spent much of my time in utter confusion; my second year was a continuation of the fire fighting (and a labour strike); my third year was B.Ed. Coordinator during the pandemic; and I taper out for my fourth year.

Now I have an academic coach, a few mentors, and the shear will to do what I want to do. I have reoriented my upcoming contract and I continue with a 80-20 contract. The difference is, it’s a 3-year contract, I am teaching a few more graduate courses, and committed to my research agenda at 0% pay (but almost 100% of what counts).

It took me some time to truly understand what my mentors and coach are telling me. There is a part of me that does not want to accept what I hear, but there is also another part of me who wants to realize what is possible and find the joy in what I do. There are many distractions in my work, but I can see the urgency to be selfish.

When I use the word selfish, I do not mean self-indulgence or narcissism. What I do mean is I need to take a moment to value myself, my gifts, and my time. I spent most of my life in service to others and living up to perceived expectations. I was never willing to sell my soul, but I have betrayed myself many times (not knowingly).

The Art of Rest. Things have slowed down and as of July 1, 2022, my job has shifted. No more B.Ed. Coordinator, minimize administrative duties, and add more teaching. One a flight to Vancouver, I was able to doodle the pieces to together, correlating my life with my kid’s (a commitment I make) and living out my dreams. I can do this.

Much like my painted toes above and slowly rolling out of bed this morning, it’s ok to have a slow start to a good day. My kid treated me to a pedicure yesterday and I was able to accept and enjoy. I love the life that I am living and I do not take it for granted. I have good friends, caring colleagues, and a loving family. Seriously, life is good.

The Dust is Settling

Week 120 – July 3, 2022 – Feeling at Home

It’s been 11-months living in Prince George full-time. Although I started work here 4-years ago, I spent the first two years living in 2 places (and commuting back and forth via plane), the next year I lived on the Sunshine Coast and taught remotely during the pandemic, and I finally moved to Prince George with my kid for my fourth year.

Oh my gosh, now it’s the summer term. I had a very full spring term. And, the fall and winter terms were the full immersion back to in person classes (but online meetings). Some meetings have transitioned to in person (which took some time to get used to) but conferences remained online (at least the ones I had attended). It was a full year.

Here I blog in my friend’s living room. I am house sitting, the kid is at work, and I’m doing the laundry. The simple things in life… post July 1, 2022. The pace of life has changed and I certainly enjoyed sleeping and resting during this long weekend. I am taking time for me and be deliberate with every moment I take. Ah… it feels great.

I moved my books that are work related and moved them back to my office at work. My office is undergoing a declutter, as well as my mind. As much as the pandemic has taught me how to be alone and enjoy my own company, it tampered with my notions of boundaries and time management. Work and life blended together too much.

Admittedly, I was not great at separating work life and home life during my formative years as a student and my young adult life as a K-12 educator. OK. Some habits will not change. I can accept that, but what I am recognizing is my priorities. Some things are non-negotiable and some of my priorities are changing. Guess what? That’s ok.

I’m just not willing to give myself away and compromise my values and integrity. I’m tired of betraying myself to please others. I’m not doing that anymore. It feels awful. I believe that I have a lot to offer and I can just be myself. That’s enough. It’s got to be. I am foraging to find my path where I can live in my values, learn/grow, and be happy.

What am I doing now? Aside from house sitting and doing (my kid’s) laundry, I’m watching “Somebody Feed Phil” on Netflix, blogging my reflections, and surrounding myself with my journals and coloured pens to doodle, imagine, and plan. I am in my joy-zone. My next step is to write and be in such a way that brings me joy. That’s it.

Moments of Gratitude

Week 119 – June 26, 2022 – Transformation is bumpy

What a beautiful night. Can you believe that I took this photo at 10pm at night? This is one of the things that I have noticed about living in the Central Interior of BC versus the Lower Mainland. The days are much longer and late night walks are viable. The evening remains relatively light outside and late night walks are back on my things to do. I loved walking along the waterfront when I lived on the Sunshine Coast. Now, it’s walking around my neighbourhood and taking the time to appreciate my location.

Today makes the first hot day of the summer in BC. It’s not the heat dome like it was last year, thank goodness, but it’s a couple of days of hot weather. I would say this is the first day of summer, IMHO. Just last month it was hailing and snowing in Prince George, so this hot weather is a nice change of pace. Thank goodness my apartment faces north, so it has been quite pleasant inside for most of the day. That said, I took out two fans from storage, one for the living room and the other for my bedroom.

As I watch the news and listen to the weather warnings, I am reminded that we have to be prepared for change. I was listening to a podcast the other day stating that one cannot control outcomes, but can control the process. Meaning, I can only control myself. That’s it. I can certainly take advice from others, but I cannot make something happen when the decision is not mine to make. I can only control what I can control and part of that is trusting myself, not betraying myself, and being true to myself.

It has taken me a lifetime to get here. I spent most of my life trying to please others, meet other people’s expectations, and striving to be someone else. This is not to say that I was not myself at times, but I often found myself trying to belong to others when the real lesson was to belong to myself. What I am saying here is very Brene Brown and it is very difficult to say that I been motivated by what I perceived what others thought of me and pretended to be someone who I am not (many times).

I was so grateful to go to Vancouver last week to take time for me (and work, of course) but also meet up with friends and family. Feeling connected and being in community are very important to me. Of course it is, as mentioned above, but I am learning what it means to do what’s important to me and feel good about it. I am developing a new habit and finding that I get caught in the old paradigm. But at least I am noticing and findings ways to remedy my feelings of regret and betrayal.

After a meeting last week, my colleagues/friends went out for dinner and afterwards shared with me the idea of “the path less travelled” and recited Robert Frost’s poem of “The Road Not Taken.” I appreciated their encouragement and insight. I’ve been pondering about it and wrestle with the idea that I am not going to take a direction that is true to my values and will not compromise my integrity. I need to consider myself in my next steps and what brings me joy. It’s my pedagogical journey to take.

Although it has taken me sometime to get to this place of being and understanding, I am thankful to have a series of events happen to me the way it did. I am not perfect. What I do know is, I am free. I can do what I want and now I know the rules so that I can play the game the way I want to. Again, I have control and agency of the process. I trust that in the end the product will be the same. From now on, I am going to listen to my instincts, feelings, and intuition. There is more than one way to get to my why.

Daily Writing Practice

Week 118 – June 17, 2022 – Self-Efficacy

Here we go again. I am reconsidering daily blog writing. It is not for the reason of blogging on a daily basis like my friend and colleague Ian Landy @technolandy does. It has been recommended to me several times to adopt a practice of writing. I want to write. At first, I considered blogging daily and I was unable to maintain that practice, but the WHY is different. When I blog, I am reflecting on my week and the big ideas for learning from that week. The content could be personal or professional. Now, the idea of blogging daily comes from the idea of writing academically on a regular basis. The thought of that seems daunting, so I return to my blog as a place of solace.

I started to blog years ago to build my confidence and efficacy to write. I wanted to get my ideas out there with some level of risk (thus going public with what I write) but not so risky that I have to publish what I was writing (meaning academically). What I’ve enjoyed and appreciate the writing process is the ability to construct one’s thinking into a series of words. As I write, new ideas emerge. Abstract ideas start to make sense and I feel a sense of accomplishment with each blog I write. Although right now I can only access my blog via an application (because I locked myself out of my own website with the 2-step authentication and MOVING (and losing passwords)), I am drawn to my blog as a way to work out some of my thoughts. It’s a joyful place.

Now knowing that I intend to write academically on a daily basis, blogging daily seems reasonable to me to build up my efficacy to write and my sense of self-efficacy that I am able to start, develop, and maintain this practice of writing. Much of what I wrestle with is my own fear of writing. I never thought I was a good writer. Why? I’m not a good reader. This belief is something that I have carried with me as a child. Much of my career has been to overcome what I cannot do. I thought I was bad at math even though I got a minor in math, a teaching concentration in math, and taught secondary math for more than an a decade. I would consider myself to be a math educator. This learning cycle continues with me and research. Part of research is reading and writing. I’m not sure why I do this, but research is my next challenge.

I don’t find the process natural, yet. I spent the last few years transitioning from my independent work and public service into higher education. What does it mean to be an academic? I am learning on the job. I am learning autodidactically with the help of a few friends and mentors. I feel very lucky to have people I can reach out to. I also have an academic coach too. I just started with one a month or so ago. It took some time to get things sorted and ask for help. I am so that I did. I feel more confident and willing. I am learning when my sweet spot writing time is and what am I willing to do to block out time to write. Autodidactism was at the heart of my dissertation (at least the beginning of it) and deliberate practice and expertise. I am also teaching that in a course I’m just finishing this term. So much is returning back to me in a good way.

It seems like the afternoon is a great time for me to write (pending that there are no meetings) and I really enjoy listening to Bridgerton as I blog. This may not be true as I write academically, but I am enjoying the pace of writing and listening to music at the same time. I find myself as I write that I overthink and want to edit at the same time. I really appreciate practice with my blog as a way to learn on my own. As much as I can get help from others, I need to find what works best for me as well. I appreciate the help though and I am grateful to have people in my life who I can trust and lean on. Having others in life to connect with as critical friends is rare. Cherish them. OK. This will conclude today’s daily blog and I will transition into my academic writing.

Feeling Settled

Week 117 – June 12, 2022 – Turned the Corner

Gosh. Look at this gorgeous night. This photo comes from my friend’s property. She’s on my curling team and she invited the team and a couple of her friends over for dinner. My other teammates offered to pick me up to go over to my friend’s house for dinner. We had an amazing meal. Most of it was vegetarian (for me). We had drinks on the deck and played several rounds of lawn darts (my team won). We ended the night with a fire and we had great conversation throughout. I had so much fun and I spent more time that night listening, appreciating, and enjoying. I feel very lucky.

Feeling settled is a big deal. Lots have changed over the last few years (and decade). Welcome to the midlife unravelling. I started when I was 40 and hasn’t stopped. At the time, I left K-12 education and embarked on a pedagogical journey that was atypical and unordinary. I was able to try new things, question self (many times), and challenge myself on what I was able to do (or not able to do). My sense of self efficacy needed a critical self evaluation and reconstruction. It doesn’t matter what people perceived (or what I perceived of others), what I thought I was able to do varied.

No question. I have completed a doctorate and I’m teaching at a university. I have published a few papers and presented at conferences. These are all good things but I never felt like I was enough because it felt like what I did was never enough. Gah. That was tough to say, but true. I look back and realized that I never savoured the moment because I was consumed by doing more so that I could feel like I am enough. If we are focused on Dr. Brene Brown’s work on vulnerability, I was swimming in a sea of shame. I needed to unpack those feelings and understand my worth.

For the the last few years, I have been finding myself and redefining who I am. I spent a good chunk of my life pretending and putting on a show for everyone else to see. On the one hand, I was myself, but on the other hand, I was hiding. I could not do that anymore. I moved myself, my life, and my kid to a new community. I drove a U-Haul truck (still can’t believe that). I sold my half of the house and getting a divorce. I sought help from friends, mentors, and coaches. I love being with my kid and grateful to have a community of people around me who are supportive, loving, and awesome.

I was chatting with a friend today and caught myself having a meta moment. I was sharing a lesson with her that I would normally share with students, and one that I was learning myself. As a high school math teacher, I would tell my students not to worry about the test or their marks, but to focus on the math (the learning). The grades will come. I learned that lesson from curling. Don’t focus on the win or score, but on the little things like your technique or communication. For myself, I need to focus on the joy, the passion, my practice, my purpose. The publications and promotion will come. Focus on the goods internal to the practice (McIntyre, 1984).