Tough Times

Yesterday morning I woke up with serious back pain (an on and off problem) and felt completely overwhelmed. Personally and professionally it felt like there was no way I could do all that I needed to do. The week stretched ahead of me, well, more to the point it loomed over me. Even after getting up and going to the gym I was in rough shape. So I did what I often do, I tweeted. (If you click on the image it will take you to my tweets and all of the responses I received.)

I was overwhelmed (positively) by the responses to my question. The willingness of other educators to take a moment, seriously consider a question, and offer thoughtful responses is such a gift. I know perfectly well how busy those folks’ days are and yet they stopped and offered me some help. Others reached out to me via text or email, checking in and offering support. I feel lucky beyond words. I also feel grateful to be in a profession full of caring people.

With a little distance I’ve got some thoughts on how I felt yesterday morning. I used to be a morning person but that isn’t so true any more. While waking up is not a challenge, mornings are. The day with its commitments, needs, and to dos is ahead of me and it feels huge. On a Monday morning this is exacerbated by feeling the whole week ahead. Add in waking up with such back pain and I’m not shocked by my feelings.

Part of tweeting was a need to vent and a genuine interest in learning how others face days like that one. Another part was a sense that it’s important we share these moments too. We are all quick to share the good moments, the highlights, the positives in our lives. As we should be. I think we need to share the challenges too. It helps to know that others face the same difficulties, feel the same emotions. When we always see the positives from others and we are struggling it leaves us wondering what we’re doing wrong. Wondering why things are so good for everyone else. Wondering why we aren’t doing well too. When, in reality, everyone else is having tough times too.

Sharing my rough morning was a factor in having a better day. I felt less alone. I felt seen and understood and cared for. Thank you to all of you who made me feel that way.

3 replies on “Tough Times”

  1. Laurie McCullough says:

    Love reading this, Jen. I hope you’re feeling better. You bring so much to each day!

    • jenorr says:

      Laurie, thank you for that. I can step back and know that this is one of those challenging times and that it won’t last, but it doesn’t make it stop just because I recognize that. I am so lucky to be surrounded by wonderful, kind, generous people who definitely make things better!

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