Has it REALLY been a year since I last wrote?? Where does the time go?
And even more interesting... why does this week, out of 52, keep popping up on my radar?
Two years ago this week, I was running my first-ever half marathon (March 7th).
One year ago this week, I was sharing my candid confession about my lack of street time, in favor of seat time: writing, cubicle hell, and starting a business.
Then this week, a strange thing happened. Sunday night, out of the blue, during a text conversation, my sister casually asks:
Would you consider 'walking' the Space Coast 1/2 Marathon with me in Nov?
Me: Definitely. Totally. Maybe a little running thrown in for good measure?? I'm in. :) I'd love to do that event!
Her: Really? Oh man that would be SO great!!!!
Frankly, after a few stops and starts since last summer, I was ready to have a goal again. I attempted to set one last summer, to run Miami ING in Jan 2012, but it wasn't in the cards.
Instead, my life was to take another turn that would keep running at bay for a while more.....
I returned (unexpectedly, gratefully, and hurriedly) to teaching, in late September, a full six weeks after the school year began. Though I hadn't left education, I had taken on other roles in the past six years, located in the district office, working with fellow teachers and their students. I missed having my own students and own classroom to try out new instructional 'stuff' (my technical term) that I researched and shared with other teachers. I also taught classes at the local community college, which I liked a lot, but it wasn't the same either.
Returning to the classroom full-time turned out to be harder
than I expected. Running would have to wait.
Physically, I was struggling to adjust to the hours and to being on my feet 10+ hours a day. In cubicle life, I had flexibility. In the classroom, it's contstant. In cubicle life, I could run down the hall to the restroom whenever I needed to. In the classroom, I wait 94 minutes and race to the RR in between classes. I severely limited my water intake to adjust to this new schedule, drinking less than 8 oz before school and only (1) 20 oz bottle during a 7-hour school day. Dehydration became my friend and my enemy.
Emotionally, I was distraught. High school kids in a classroom (think: pack animal mentality) can be brutal, ruthless, hateful, hurtful, disrespectful, and lacking boundaries. My new students were all of these things and more. I was called 'bitch' daily and was told more than once to 'check my attitude,' 'back off,' and 'shut the hell up.' It was painful. I was struggling. I regretted my decision to return to the classroom. I was depressed, exhausted, shocked, and scared.
If this wasn't going to work out, what was I going to do? I wanted to be in the classroom, but I wanted a productive, inviting, respectful environment.... where we could all be learners together... the way things were in my previous middle and high school classrooms.
I was in a good school in a fantastic community. But the odds were against me in the beginning: Kids were transferred from teachers/classes they liked, to a new teacher whom they had never seen/met, and the 'new teacher' (though it's my 18th year in education) had little in her toolbox. We were starting from scratch together. It was ugly.
I am a practitioner by nature. I love teaching. What was I going to do? Students had changed in six years. Running was not on my radar. I gained weight. I contined to be dehydrated (though I would't realize just how much until this week).
I had tough lessons to learn and bridges to build... about teaching in this age of digital natives and about how to take care of myself.
Somehow, during Christmas vacation, things changed. When students and I returned to classes in January, we all seemed to accept each other, the schedule, and what we needed to do. Life began to return to normal, which I wrote about [here].
But I still wasn't running....
Then, the serendipitous text conversation happened that led to the rest of my week, which included
Wednesday night, when I began preparing for my first (purposeful) early AM run in nearly 18 months.
Digging through my running gear drawer (kept close by with intent and wishful thinking), I looked for something comfortably familiar. My hand landed on my WDW Princess Half Marathon race top.
A great choice for re-entry into training for my next half marathon, I thought.
Little did I know what I'd see next....
As I laid the top across the bed, I noticed the date: March 7, 2010. Exactly two years ago to the day. Definitely, a sign!!
Can we find our way back?