i have always fluctuated in the way that i approach new paths -- sometimes i am a full-speed-ahead voyager, other times i proceed with caution. the path that after-school paved is no different. i flung myself head-first into this work, but find comfort in the familiar - writing lesson plans, professional development, too many meetings to keep straight in my mental calendar. there is the comfort of september and bulletin boards brazen with our boasts.
i am comfortable knowing that my fight against injustice takes place no matter where i am, and that finding peaceful solutions to violence has become a daily way of life. I’ve learned so much in returning to the place I grew up to work, breathe and be again. i do not always practice what i preach, but in terms of the ways i connect with students, i try hard. one of the things that students have said to me before is that they want to learn from me because i tell them stories about myself, my life, who i am. i don't know any other way to teach, than to talk about my experiences. if i connect what we're learning to myself, there's a greater chance that my students will try to connect it to themselves, as well.
with strong movement professionally, it’s interesting that i find myself personally withdrawing – but it’s a testament to the fact that my heart now lives outside of my body, in the form of a 12 month old runningman, with comedic timing like no other, a double-dimpled grin that absolutely leaves me powerless, and a natural Mohawk to die for. while i have not grown comfortable while waxing domestic, the role of motherhood is much like the role of teaching. i come to the work jumping off of cliffs without looking, and find myself too exhausted to sleep… yet the joy is unparalleled. my son is more astounding than i could’ve ever guessed, so much so that i struggle to write well about his influence on my psyche.
but one thing is for sure – he is an old soul. he hears music from the past and recognizes it; he is well beyond his year. the time that separates us is spent working with other children, sharing my stories, teaching them new ways to do and think, trying to complete the circle so that one day i will practice what i preach full-time, and know how to navigate the newest path unfolding before my feet.