backgroung

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Nerves and Reflection


Today I woke up with a stomachache. I know the cause. Stepping out of my comfort zone causes me all sorts of stress. Over the years, I have tried to attack this type of stress like a Bandaid - just pull it off quick and you won't notice the pain! :) My friend, Tenille, challenged me to participate in the Slice of Life Challenge. I am a writing teacher, so this should be a breeze. Oh wait. Yes I teach writing, and somewhere in a deep corner of my heart I may have considered writing for other people to see, but blogging every day for a month is giving me a giant case of nerves and doubt. What if I fail at this? Are there "rules" for blogging? What will happen if no one looks at my blog, will I get my feelings hurt? How will anyone even know it is out there? What if, heaven forbid, I make a grammar or spelling error??? Yikes! After all, I am the self-imposed grammar queen of my school, so I would imagine there will be someone out there looking for mistakes in my commas or semicolons...

All of this discomfort about sharing my writing with the world leads me back to my students. If you are a teacher, you know how most things you do in life wind up reminding you of a student, lesson, or class. While I sit here riddled with doubts, I am reminded how often my own students have probably sat in my classroom with the same feelings running through their bodies. Have I been the teacher who alleviates those fears and empowers them to give it a try? I hope so. I preach to them all year that words are power. Words give them the ability to change themselves or the world. I know that every year I watch my students in June, full of their newly complete 4th grader selves, reflecting on their early writing pieces with awe and laughter at how "bad" they felt they were. They are then able to look at those pieces through an editor's eye and see the errors or places that some revision would have been a good idea. We talk about how they weren't "bad", they just didn't know everything they needed to be a fourth grade writer back in August. I know they learn, I just hope that they also felt like I was in their corner, and they could do anything with the power of words.


I'm going to thank my friend, Tenille, for challenging me (as she always does) to move away from where I am most comfy and at least try to share some of what I see and feel as I move through this month. I know it won't be perfect (I'm going to try and deal with that) and there will be some errors (please forgive them). 

Wish me luck!!

Sincerely,

Tara Reed

14 comments:

  1. You are not alone. I have felt much the same way since I decided to commit to this challenge. Isn't it amazing how often we ask our students to do things that we ourselves are terrified of doing. I'm glad you took the step and I look forward to reading more of your slices as I enjoyed reading your post today. I could not have put my thoughts about my fears down so well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for admitting you are nervous too!

      Delete
  2. Welcome. I'm glad you took your friends challenge. NO judging here. You can share with your kids your trepidation at trying something new. It could be fun. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Welcome. I'm glad you took your friends challenge. NO judging here. You can share with your kids your trepidation at trying something new. It could be fun. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I am so stinkin' proud of your Tara Reed! I could hear Brene Brown's voice asking, "What would you do if you weren't afraid to fail?" as I read through your post. You are a brave soul, and I enjoyed every word of your post. The part about our kiddos becoming 4th graders in May was particularly meaningful, because you are the one who taught me it takes A WHOLE YEAR to grow a 4th grade writer. Thanks for participating, and know that moving out of our comfort zone means we are fully alive!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well I figure it goes with my "I will embrace failure" mantra of this year. What's the worst thing that can happen?? :) Just kidding. It is going to be awesome! Thanks for making me try new things, friend.

      Delete
  5. I agree with Lori. Your feelings of uncertainty are prevalent in many writers' hearts. I would go even further and say that such feelings come with any challenge. Fear and doubt arise whenever we are new to something. It is part of human nature to question the self. Perhaps this is why humans can evolve. We hesitate, make new choices, and become different because of those choices; of course, this is only true for those who take on the challenge.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Welcome. You have found a place that supports and cheers you on. There is no judgement. The blank page is scary, and I normally let it win. Not this month! Glad to have other newbies out there! Happly Slicing.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Welcome Tara! As you can see, people will notice your writing here. This is a very supportive, encouraging space. Write and post, read others' slices, and enjoy the ride! (No rules to blogging, BTW.)

    I also started my blog to force myself to do what I ask my students to do. It gives us more validity as writing teachers when we can say, "Just yesterday I was working on a piece of writing and got stuck and then..."

    Keep on writing and welcome to March SOLSC!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Tara, you are an inspiration to so many! I'm so proud of you and am so thankful for your friendship! I was never blessed with a biological sister, God gave me "a sister two doors down"! Thank you for all you do for those precious children you teacher everyday! I love you and wish you happiness as you complete this challenge!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Oh Tara Reed! I adore you! I love that we are taking this journey together! I know my kids will be watching to see if I keep up with this challenge. So, I am so very thankful that I have you as my colleague, co-writer, and friend! I know I will need you and Tenille!!! Together, we can do this!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Welcome to the challenge. Last year was my first year and I still have some of those same feelings. I always wonder why someone would want to read my story - but they do and I keep coming back. BTW - errors make authenticity! :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Kuddos to Tara for figuring out how to add the Facebook Widget. I need you to teach me!

    ReplyDelete