Sheryl Crow sang about it. And it’s a very catchy song. The chorus basically goes like this: “A change will do you good.”
Everyone who knows me knows I am a creature of habit. I can’t even get ready in the morning without doing everything in the exact same order. Last year, I moved out of a bungalow into a two story home and having to go up and down stairs throughout the course of a normal day almost killed me. Not because of the extra calorie burn (don’t put me down for cardio) but because it took a while to establish my most comfortable routine. I like everything a certain way but if I NEEEEEEEEEEED to, I can fly by the seat of my pants. That doesn’t mean you will see my Tupperware containers haphazardly thrown into the cupboard, my lunch unpreppared for school the next day immediately after supper, or my meticulous grocery list and meal planning board thrown to the wind. All these things will be done or I might break.
Wow. After reading over that sentence, I am a LITTLE crazy regarding anything to do with food. Oh well. That’s me!
The change I have experienced throughout my career has been *insert smart word here to mean “A WHOLE HECK OF A LOT”*. I have grown as a person, as a teacher, and as a friend. I have stayed at the same school for 5 years, but the school hasn’t been the same for 5 years. I have taught the same grade for 5 years, but it really hasn’t been the same grae for 5 years. I have had some of the same coworkers for 5 years, but they haven’t stayed the same people for 5 years. During those 5 years, I have taught 152 unique kindergarten students, worked with 3 different principals, rotated through 4 different grade partners, moved classrooms 3 times, and worked with DOZENS of new staff members. A comment that makes my blood BOIL is when a friend (usually the ones with absoltely know teaching experience, or experience with children at all) says “Well, you’ve been doing this for 5 years now, you must have it down pat and waltz outta that place at 3:20!”. Since I like to THINK I’ve matured in the last few years of my life, I find some comment neutral enough to keep conversation going but with just enough stab to let them know they are totally WRONG.
After my first year of teaching was over and I was done sheerly trying to survive, my eyes were able to see further and my brain was able to think deeper. I didn’t have to worry about silly things like how to work the photocopier, but was rather able to focus more on my students’ learning. What REALLY did it for me was Twitter. I actually connected with like minded people who shared the same thoughts and feelings as me. It was all thanks to a great principal and leader I had at my school for only a few short years.
All that change for me was really difficult to digest. I believe it’s rare that a person will choose change even though it’s what’s best for us the majority of the time. People say that the best change is the kind that are the most difficult. However, I think the best change is the kind you get the most excited about. Sometimes it’s easier and sometimes it’s more difficult. Even creatures of habit can change.