2016 – The Year in Review

As a building principal, it’s tough to really look back on the twelve months that were 2016. My vision is flooded by the snapshots and vignettes that are August through December. If July feels eons ago, I don’t have a chance of recollecting what March looked like! Nonetheless, the past four months or so have been quite a transitional time in my career and personal life. Pardon what will be undoubtedly a rambling stream of thought. Like everything else, I’m jumping in with both feet on this first post!

On the home front, I am killing it as the mom of a middle schooler…a daughter to boot! Though my sarcasm is thick as I write this, I’m convinced that anyone who believes they are actually killing it as a parent of a pre-teen must be spiking his/her coffee in the morning (and afternoon, and evening). The hardest part of it all is that, as parents, we transport ourselves back to the angst of our own middle school years in the hopes that we can somehow use the wisdom of our own emotional bumps and bruises to protect our kids from getting their own. I find myself repeating the mantra to my daughter, “Kyra, play it cool. Just BE!” and then cringing later when I realize that 1) She sent a needy, insecure text and that 2) My mantras are  undoubtedly driving that insecurity. And so, as I head into the new year with the word “Healthy” on my brain, I know that building a healthy sense of self in my little lady is just as important as eating plenty of greens and fruits.

If you had asked me last year at this time how I was feeling about work, you would have found me perched atop the fence between staying and doing some curriculum work. Thankfully, several people have come into my life to leave me feeling grounded in my work as a principal. Fate put a silly Twitter book in my hands this summer in response to my need to constantly be learning something new. Less than a week later, I stumbled across Lindsy and the #momsasprincipals hashtag, and life changed. My “tribe,” a Voxer group of fellow MAPs, has become an overwhelmingly positive force in my life and in my ability to thrive in my role. Though I start out each year with the hope of staying (irritatingly) optimistic through whatever life hands me, this crew gives me the ideas, the ears to listen, and the cheerleaders to stay firmly rooted in that promise. Thank you to those of you who may read this and who have been along on this ride with me, as you’ve given me the comfort of knowing I’m right where I need to be.

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Looking forward, I am energized and (yes, irritatingly) optimistic about what’s ahead. I hope that my focus on HEALTH in the year ahead will keep me centered on physical health, but also the emotional health of myself, my own children, and my marriage – and important factor, as I’m not sure what I’d do without my rock who supports me! I’m eager to continue this journey of blogging to hopefully document what’s on my mind, behind the “smile and nod curtain” that is my role as a principal. Thanks for the nudge, and cheers to a positive, healthy 2017!

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