Thursday, February 28, 2013


When I was a child, my parents scarred me for life by demanding that I ask permission before doing things like going out to play or having a sleeve of cookies before dinner time.  I know.  The nerve, right?  Under my parents' tutelage, I have grown to be hard-working, diligent, and always mindful of keeping superiors {and probably everyone else} adequately informed of my whereabouts and intentions.

And so the seed of my current writer's block were sown.

The problem is that I have been sworn to secrecy.  And it could be killing me.  Okay, so maybe that was a bit dramatic.  But still.  This keep-my-mouth-shut nonsense is for the birds.  Actually, maybe not.  Birds don't do a very good job of keeping their mouths shut either.

There are so many things changing right now that it's hard to contain myself, and yet strangely not appropriate to blast them via the interwebs, especially since I consider y'all my 1st removed besties and all.

I'm hoping that at least getting this off of my chest will help with that block that happens to all of us when we desperately want to spill the beans, but know that such action could be cause for other, more severe repercussions down the road.

So.  I leave y'all with a toast, to putting a positive spin on the uncomfortable, yet inevitable changing nature of life!


Monday, February 18, 2013


This was a glorious morning, I woke up to the bright sunshine peeking through my blinds after a blissful 10 hours of sleep and a day of no set plans ahead of me.  It was 9 a.m.  I laid in bed, drank my coffee, read my daily Bible verse, and caught up on all 104 Words with Friends games {why does it seem like games multiply like rabbits on that thing?} and decided to head out for a little neighborhood run.

But.  Then.  As I stepped my left foot outside the front door, I became aware of the ominous clouds quickly approaching.  Because I am overly dependent on all things portable and electronic, I dutifully checked the all powerful iPhone weather app only to discover an impending chance of rain.  30%, in case you were wondering.

And then it happened.

The mental block.  Motivation disturber.  Game changer.

The thing is, I kind of like running in the rain.  And I don't love the treadmill.  And I didn't want to drive to the gym.

But I'm apparently a chicken.

So I gave in and drove to the gym.  I ran on the treadmill.  I drove home.  It did not even rain one little drop.

Today I'm gave in to the what if monster and now I'm temporarily surrendering my runner's card.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

a time for every purpose under heaven

Sixteen years ago, as a high school senior, I wanted to be an artist.

My dad told me that I should probably choose a real career.

Fifteen years ago, as a college freshman, I planned to combine my art skills and my interest in business into a career in marketing.

Everyone said I'd be successful.

Fourteen years ago, as a college sophomore, I fell in love with a group of third graders and decided to become a teacher.

My mama asked what had taken me so long.

Thirteen years ago, as a college junior, I found that elementary students were more than my patience could handle and I decided to teach high school instead.

People thought I might be crazy.

Twelve years ago, as a college senior, I found inspiration from a regular group of youth-center-drop-in kids and set my sights on teaching kids who needed me the most.

People said I reminded them of "the chick from Dangerous Minds."

Ten years ago, as a first year teacher, I worked harder than I ever thought I could with less than I ever thought I'd have.  Less time, less resources, less guidance, less places for students to sit than my enrollment required.  They told me that they would make me cry; I did not.  I thought I'd never be able to stay sane with more than a few teenage girls in one room.

People asked me if I was scared.  I wasn't.

Eight years ago, as a third year teacher, I changed schools.  Burnt out and losing steam, I was encouraged to give teaching a try in a new district.  The students booed me during an assembly. I got cussed out for the first time in my teaching career.  One of the first students I was able to make a connection with died of a drug overdose.

People said, "kids these days."

Yesterday, as a tenured teacher, I was told that my position was being eliminated and that I was being transferred out of the small, imperfect, often frustrating program where I have spent the last eight years.

My co-workers said, "Laura, we're sorry.  We'll miss you."

Tomorrow, I will tell my favorite group of homeroom students, 10 girls who I have grown to be so proud of, that our homeroom will be dissolved next year.  That I will not be their advisor or their teacher.  That I will not be there to greet them every morning or call them when they are absent or nag them about their grades and attendance.  That they no longer have to fear my English 3-B class.

I will tell them that I've never cried in front of a class before.

I know that my students will land on their feet, as will I.  We will move on and it won't be so painful as the days go on.  Doors will open for all of us that may not have otherwise.  They will form new connections with the teachers that remain.  But today, today is just kinda hard.