A small moment of mindful appreciation

Can I just be honest for a minute? Finding the time to write this blog post has been really hard for me. It’s not that I don’t love blogging; I actually love the process of organizing my thoughts and reflections, writing them out, and opening up a conversation about some topics that I’m passionate about. Since the October F2F session, I’ve had several ideas for posts. But I have not been able to squeeze in a single minute for writing before now. Even now, there are about a hundred other things that I should be doing. Plus, I haven’t yet had a chance to do the homework of my interviews with my learners to determine their needs. But, an email from @adamcaplan to all coaches this week included this as a to-do list item:

Write a blog. Any blog! Possible topics: How did the last F2F go for you? What have you been thinking about this past month? What three things would you change if you could snap your fingers? Do you have any ideas for an action plan this year? What is new for you this school year? Which book or article has most resonated with you since school began this year, and why? What do you hope for of participants in the next F2F?

So here I am. What’s new for me this school year? I’m so glad you asked.

In the middle of August, coming off my maternity leave, I started in the job that I’ve been working toward for a very long time: technology integration specialist for the Middle and Senior Schools. Although the school had this position in the past, when the previous person left the school unexpectedly, the position wasn’t filled, and I unofficially took on some of the responsibilities of this role as part of my job in the Middle and Senior Library. I was thrilled when the school reposted the tech job after five years and I was the successful applicant. While I enjoyed working in the library, deep down I knew it wasn’t my true calling. This is what I was made for.

We’re now one quarter of the way through the school year, and what a ride it has been so far. I absolutely love my new position. I am working with teachers and students, and even some staff, trying to make technology work harder for them and facilitate their learning. I’ve learned so much already and challenged myself with completely new (to me) projects, like the grade 8 3D printing project that just wrapped up. I still have so much to learn, and an endless list of possible projects and partnerships that I want to make happen.

But wow, has it ever been busy. I don’t know if I’ve ever felt so strongly the sense of treading water trying to keep from drowning under the amount of stuff I have to do every single day. And throw a 15 month old into the mix and I just don’t have the same time that I once did to work during evenings and weekends.

How I’ve been feeling lately.

Lately I’ve been finding myself getting stressed out on my drive in to work as I go through all of the tasks and priorities for the day. But Tuesday morning, as I drove down some of the few remaining undeveloped roads in my region, I was struck by the beauty of a surprise overnight snowfall. Every tree was coated in a thick layer of not-yet-melted snow, and the morning light was just beginning to rise.  And so I tried to put aside the stresses and the pressures, if only for a moment. I tried to slow down my racing brain and just appreciate the beauty of my surroundings. And you know what? Although I arrived at work and got right down to business, and likely didn’t have the chance to even look out a window again until dusk was falling and I was heading out to my car for the evening commute, those few minutes of mindful appreciation made a difference in my day.