Dear Diary,

I have a lot to decompression for you this week for which writing will be a favorable solution.

Looking ahead to the weekend is both exciting for the time to relax, and at the same time, giving me a sense of hilarity as I make attempts to whip my house in order. Each of these must happen for my sanity.

In the last few weeks, there have been a number of shifts, planning for changes to come, and providing input, feedback, and discussion as the first quarter comes to an imminent conclusion. All of these have induced more stress or aided in finding solutions to problems that have newly existed this school year, not only for me, but also for many in the field of education.

This week I was thankful that early on in my career I balanced the workload of a k-12 art teaching position, managing 14 different classes in my schedule. Mind you, not 14 sections of one grade level, not 3 sets of 4 grade levels plus a couple. No, 14 different classes: one of each of kindergarten through 8th grade, with additional secondary courses on top of the elementary and middle levels, in one cycle. Having this experience taught me lessons of preparation, organization, teamwork, and flexibility.

All of these skills came in handy when my itinerant partner was out sick without a sub, resulting in the combination of doubling grade levels for double art in the gym all day. (i.e. 40 artists in the gym at times having a blast creating artwork) It was both energizing and draining, but I accepted the challenge with confidence and enthusiasm. After all, the kids who had art the day before with me were pumped to have art again.

I surely missed my itinerant partner at both recess duties because she usually takes the lead, and her replacements were assigned their first recess duty, laying low as I had on my first ever recess duty, just taking it all in – it was a beautiful day to be outside.

The day concluded with a teacher leadership meeting that lasted a little longer than usual, but was informative and the discussion open. I like being a part of this group because we are open-minded and willing to help each other when needed, and have honest conversations with our own supervisor when needed. I feel valued and enjoy being a part of something like this.

When I returned home, I found that I had left my laptop charger at the school. The school that I was not assigned to the following day, and had already traveled 30 minutes commuting home after a hectic and long 11 hours. I had to return on my way back home the next day. In the meantime, I crossed my fingers that my laptop, the device that I’m required to utilize all day to teach with remote and in-person learners, would keep a charge and not fail me. Luckily, I made it through, but on my way out of school, determined not to forget to stop for my laptop charger where I had forgotten it the previous day, I was unaware that I left my lunchbox on my desk. This school was even further from my home, approximately 50 minutes in one direction.

That brings me to this moment. Approaching the end of the week, a jeans day, Friday, and I’ll pack my lunch in a pink and purple sparkly LOL girls’ lunchbox because that’s all I have that will fit my food.