Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Writing Fire

I loved Katherine Sokoloski's post last week posing the question, "Should teachers be writers?" I more frequently hear the refrain that teachers need to be readers, but we don't often talk about teachers as writers.  We most always write with our students, but when do we write for ourselves.  It can be challenging. I know.

In 2015, I was the least prolific on my blog aside from the first year I created the blog when I wrote a single post and was done. I wasn't connected. I didn't know I needed to be connected.  This past year, I haven't had the energy to write.  A series of events blindsided me and it took my strength of mind to persist.  I opted out of writing, but I did engage in the self-care of working out.  It really isn't the lesser of two evils for me.  But I am back into writing sooner than I thought.  I always knew I would be back in, especially by March.  I couldn't, I wouldn't miss the month-long Slice of Life Writing Challenge. It was what pushed me into blogging routinely in the first place and taught me the most about writing in a community. It was a series of post last week, however, that helped me recover sooner.

A second post last week reminded me that the SOLSC was five weeks away.  I had diagnosed myself with what I at first termed "leader fatigue," but after researching it, find it best described as social good fatigue.  What stands out most for me is number 3 about the power of community--by being "connected to coaches, and mentors, and colleagues who care for them and can help them stay healthy. And it's helpful to have a few role models who inspire you by how they stay passionate and committed over the long haul"(Miller, 2014).  I am lucky to have both in face-to-face community and my virtual community.  It helps me sustain and rekindle my fire.

When my former student Ashley Carson, now a teacher, created her blog  last week and posted each day, my writing fire was rekindled.  When three other teacher-friends, Alicia Duarte, Autumm Harrar, and Laura Kies, committed to joining the SOLSC in March, I was re-energized.  When I just listened to all the teachers from the Two Writing Teachers Voxer group I recently joined, discuss their writing work all week with post-it notes, my writing fire was stoked.  I realized that I can manage to write a post-it a day. Just like I can manage working out for an hour a day. I consider it a small win for my writing, perhaps because as I know a blog post always takes longer than I think, but  a post-it can take on any size.