Here’s what I am thinking about today (I know you care):
Usually, I write about my struggles and shortcomings and how difficult it is for ordinary me to navigate the extraordinary world of my children. But, today, I had an epiphany. YEA ME!
I believe life (circumstances, events, God) prepares you for what comes next…you go through this challenge to make you stronger for the next challenge, etc.
For example: I AM completely convinced that at age 19, I was given the challenge to love and raise my son all alone, for a REASON. It had a purpose. (It had about 26, 569 purposes, but I’m focusing on one specific one today)
Now, 22 years later, when my awesome husband travels or deploys, I don’t shove myself in a lonely corner, curl up in the fetal position and avoid showering for a month. It’s all good.
And I believe it is all good because I survived challenge #1, preparing me for challenge #2.
Often, I wonder why I was blessed with these brilliant little people and WHO in this universe thought I was capable of navigating this exhausting journey (mostly alone). I may be independent enough to do the day-to-day things, but raising geniuses??? The stork stopped at the wrong house. Big mistake. Who do these kids belong to?
I think about this.
Every. Single. Day.
It’s confusing. Overwhelming.
Sometimes, I cry.
Wouldn’t my daughters learn more if their momma was a published scientist? A renowned inventor? A noted surgeon? Someone who understood math, someone who paid attention in school, someone different…someone “better” than me.
I. Am. Ordinary.
In my previous life, I taught art in the public school world. I loved my students (still love many of them!), loved my co-workers (still love them, too!) and LOVED the bursts of chaotic creativity, hands-on, crazy messy creations, the smell of new acrylic paint (I wasn’t sniffing the paint, FYI), the smooth, glassy texture of a polished sculpture and witnessing the confidence of a student grow through self-expression.
To this day, I close my eyes and clearly see my last art room (I taught in 6 different rooms during my career), one towering wall full of windows, beautifully excessive, organized storage cabinets EVERYWHERE (sooooooo much storage that there were EMPTY cabinets waiting to be filled! OH MY!!!!), and rows of freshly wiped tables with round plastic stools pushed underneath.
I loved that room.
Actually…I helped design it. When the high school added a new wing, four brand new art rooms were included in the plans and I designed solutions and drew ideas to create the perfect environment for a 3-D creativity lab. My favorite part was this enormous metal grid that hung from the ceiling, for dangling wet sculptures or displays or decorations or whatever.
It was a masterpiece.
You might be surprised to hear that I am not a very good artist. HA! DUH! I am ordinary! I have not been lying to you!
My college degree is IN art, but I am not super talented.
I’m just ok.
You might also be surprised to hear that during the 2002-2003 school year, I was named the Secondary Teacher of the Year for the entire school district…the FIRST fine arts teacher EVER to receive that honor.
So…how could a no-so-great art teacher gain such a high honor?
Hmmmm…I’m thinking…I’m thinking…
I never said I wasn’t a good TEACHER…just not a super talented artist. Here’s the thing: You can be the world’s most talented artist (or a famous musician, or a brilliant mathematician, or a published author)…but that does not make you a “good” teacher.
I am a good teacher.
I am a good teacher.
What makes a “good” teacher?
Good teachers inspire students to grow, to see the world in a different way, to appreciate life and embrace change.
Good teachers think outside of the educational box.
Good teachers are problem solvers. What works for one student might not work for another. A good teacher understands different learning styles.
Good teachers study, search, read, seek, and question.
Good teachers aren’t afraid to try new things.
Good teachers adapt, “tweak” lessons, and evolve over time to improve their approach.
Good teachers love their students, celebrate their unique gifts and encourage them to succeed.
Good teachers know their own limitations and find ways to challenge students who need more.
This is ME. This is my homeschool.
I AM a good teacher. HA!
I can say that without sounding braggy, right??? I’m not really good at much else, so please…give me this one…
My previous life as an art teacher prepared me for homeschooling. CRAZY!
Wait until I write about my previous homeschool opinions. LOL Life is so funny.
Those wonderful years full of hundreds of crazy unique students, challenging circumstances, spilled paint and X-acto knife injuries, brought me to my current journey.
So…my children didn’t need an world-renowned inventor…they needed a good teacher.
I am a good teacher.
If I can’t teach them, I find someone who can.
And…another thing…God gave me these kids because a famous scientist would not have the time to homeschool. 😉