Published on Saturday.  Edited on Sunday.  Processing continues…

Life happens, right?  I really have been walking around in a fog for the last month.  Not the worst time in my life, but stressful.  And then this morning – clarity.

I’ve been lucky and have been able to train with sufficient focus for a few years.  It looks as though 2014 is literally karmic payback time.  Life was already a little stressful before my husband’s accident (he’s recovering well, thank God), but after that, there was just so much extra for me to worry about do that I haven’t been able to keep all the balls in the air.  I’ve been waiting for the spring break from school that started today to get caught up on work and sleep.

But without getting into details, in the last 72 hours, the Universe has provided several unrelated events that I interpret as a sign that I’m supposed to be doing something else.  I have a few years before the state says I can retire,  but it’s pretty clear that changes are afoot.   And that makes me incredibly sad.  Heart broken.  I’ve been feeling that sadness and grief for the last two days.  This morning, I woke up feeling nauseous from it, but a few minutes of reflection and prayer got my head to the right place.  It’s time to find my courage and embrace the change that is happening.

Some of this is out of my control.  But no worries – things will work out exactly the way they are supposed to.   It has been harder over the last few years to do what I do.  The gap between what kids need to know to be successful in upper level mathematics and what they have actually learned has been getting wider.  I will keep my mind open and follow the path as it presents itself.  I’m wondering now if the next move should be into the middle grades.  Maybe I can use what I’ve learned in upper levels to help prepare younger kids for what’s ahead.

One of the reasons I’ve accomplished what I have as a teacher is that I take ownership over my practice as if it were my business.  So what happens next, whatever that turns out to be, it will be my decision.    My priorities are lined up correctly – husband and training come before any job.  But I am that teacher – the one that likes to ask questions, rock boats, build programs.  I like to invest myself.  I like to empower kids – I do not teach or practice compliance.  I teach”Badassery 101″.  My students will run things.  And that, I suspect, is why I am not a good civil servant.  😉

I will continue to reflect, pray, and talk with hubby and friends, so that a plan will be made that sets things up to honor what’s important and helps me transition to the next thing.  Just in case my kids are reading this – don’t worry. We still have AP exams right around the corner and you will rock it.  I will help you stay fiercely focused.  My loyalty is to you.

But enough of that.

My life works best when I’m lifting.  Lifting is better when I’m focused.  I’m excited about the progress I’m making – especially considering I’ve been making progress while navigating the change in routines that come from two people sharing a car, one of those people healing from an accident, and that car needing repairs.  Too much stress and too many little things bothering me.  But that stress over the last couple of weeks has started a weight gain, too.  Not worried.  I know how to handle that.  Make some decisions and move on.  I’ve also been working with a new coach online who adjusted things in my program so that I can stay on track while handling this crazy time.  (No negative issues with previous coach and I still recommend him.  Change is good and even necessary.  I like learning new things from new people.)

So on this first day of spring break, I reconnected to my joy of lifting.  Today’s lift was an upper body hypertrophy split.  I’m getting stronger and bigger.   I’m excited about what is going to happen over the next year.  I’m certain that the next time I compete, the improvements will be quite noticeable.  I don’t think for a second that the obstacles I have to navigate are over.  2014 is going to be a challenge.  I’ve had challenges before and I am confident in my ability to get a thing done.  I’ve done a lot already, and I’m not talking about bodybuilding, because I haven’t accomplished much there – yet.  It took me 16 years from start to finish to get that Bachelor of Science in Mathematics – my most feared subject in high school.  There have been some awards, a national certification, and a masters degree.  I’ve accomplished almost* everything I chose to accomplish letting time be the variable.  I’ve taught for 18 years and I think I’ve taught every level of mathematics from 8th grade through calculus 2.  And I can give a pretty decent pep-talk, I’m told.


I’ve told people that I feel like the old dog at the pound that no one wants to adopt.  Well, that’s just how I feel at work.  I feel joy when I lift.   Afterwards, I feel hopeful and excited about the future.  I daydream about new adventures and new opportunities.  I dream about having a life where my success is based on my hard work.  The responsible, grown-up part of me knows I have to wait until the state says I have earned my retirement.  There is a possibility that this is all happening because there is some amazing opportunity in education I don’t know about yet because everyone knew I wasn’t available.  No matter what happens, I will maintain forward progression.

This week was not great, but today was pretty good.

*I did not get the Presidential Award for Teaching in Mathematics.  I decided to wait to apply again when there was a president I wanted to meet.  😉








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