For the last few summers, I have not done much traveling. As last school year progressed, I was committed to getting out of Indianapolis. The weekend after the school year ended, I went to Holiday Day World/Spashlin’ Safari in Santa Claus, Indiana with my husband, sons, mom, sisters, and nieces. Then, I also decided to attend my first cruise. My mother’s maternal side of the family decided to make this year’s family reunion a cruise to get the millennials to come. It worked because a lot of us came. I go to my family reunions no matter where they are, but I couldn’t pass on the opportunity to take my first cruise and take my children out of the country for the first time.
This all sounds great except for the part where I started a new job. Thankfully, my new job was understanding. It is tough enough to transition from a teacher to an administrator and then go on vacation four days into the job, but a lady has to do what a lady has to do. I enjoyed spending quality time with my husband and kids collectively and individually. It was also nice to get to meet some of my relatives I had never met. Last, I had the chance to sit and think while looking across the ocean about my latest change.
I was all set to return to my job as elementary librarian. I had almost completed all of my safe schools trainings. I had even been at my school during the summer to complete a couple of tasks. Then, this opportunity presented itself. I had some administrative interviews, but my education writing blocked some of those opportunities. I have become increasingly aware there are some educators who hate what I write about, and that’s okay with me. Some people would be upset about blocked opportunities, but I’m not. I believe in what I write about, and if you have a problem with that, then your school is probably violating principles I hold near and dear. It would not have worked.
During my reflection, I thought about service. Climibing the ladder is not about power or rank; it is about growing people and being willing to do what you can to help. I thought about areas of growth or potential stumbling block for me in this role. One I identified was my social skills or (as some people say) lack thereof.
Before I cruised to the Bahamas, my school had a team building day. As a teacher, I hated those activities. I didn’t want to play games or participate in ice breakers. I just wanted to get work done. I spent most of time strategically avoiding participating as a teacher, but I knew I could not do this as a leader. Small talk is hard for me. I don’t like it. I’m proud to say I didn’t hide. I was fully there. Don’t get me wrong; it is not my cup of tea, but I knew people were looking at me.
That may seem like a little or even silly obstacle, but if you know me, you know I can get anxiety in these situations. I wonder how else I will grow or stretch outside of my comfort zone in this role a dean. Stay tuned because you know I’ll share.
I’m back to the grind tomorrow with this horrible sunburn. I’ve never burned in my life. Good gracious! Luckily a former colleagues gave me some tips for relief.
Until next week!