28 November 2021

Gratitude Day 7

 This gets harder and harder as the week goes on. I don't want to just do trite stuff, I'm grateful for my family and my job, blah, blah, blah. I want it to be meaningful at least to me. So today I'm grateful for pain. Yes, pain. Let me explain. As I posted yesterday, I am starting to run again. I went out yesterday for my first day of couch to 5K. The only reason I'm using that is because it's a super easy way to start. I don't have any desire to get to 5K but if I do all the better. Anyway, I went out for my run and it was as hard as I anticipated it would be. I was barely picking up my feet on the run, but I was technically 'running'. After the running intervals were over, I still had to walk to get back home. As I was walking I got a pain in my left knee area. Initially it felt like the attachment point for my IT band and I figured it was just my IT band acting up. But now this morning it is actually at the back of my knee. Either way, it's not super painful per se, but it is definitely making itself known. So why am I grateful for it? Well, there are a lot of people my age, a lot of people, who can't run. For whatever reason, they no longer have the ability to run. Also, many of them live in constant pain and it's something they can't escape. This pain tells me that I did something a lot of people can't do and I don't live in pain constantly so when it happens it's a surprise. So will this pain stop me from running? No, not one bit. But it may slow my progress down slightly. I need to let this get better before I run again and I need to be more careful when I do run to make sure my form is good and I'm not running weird. So yes, for today I'm grateful for pain. 

27 November 2021

Running and minimalist shoes and Gratitude Day 6

 Let's start with the gratitude. I am extremely thankful that I got our budget back in shape the other day. I've never really used the budget app as it was designed to be used. In other words, you are supposed to create a budget, plan what you will spend on certain things, and stick to that. Yeah, I never quite did that. In the past 3 years or so that I have been using it, I've been using it as a tracker more than anything else. I make a habit of moving money around to cover what I've spent rather than saying there is no more money available for X so it has to wait. Not a very adult thing to do. So when I ignored the budget for almost 2 full months, I thought I didn't need it anymore, I discovered that I was dreadfully wrong. So on Thanksgiving morning I sat and redid the whole thing. I like it even better now. The problem is that I realize we don't have as much money as I was thinking we had - this is why we used to always be broke - and now I'm second guessing some things. But, bottom line, I'm incredibly thankful that I have gotten wiser with our money and that we aren't just blowing it like we used to. 

I'm moving on today because I want to talk about minimalist shoes. I've been wearing these Merrells for a while now: 

and I love them. Absolutely love them. I love them so much that after I had my first pair for a while, I bought a second pair. Love, love, love them. But, it's hard to see in the picture, but there is some reinforcing around the toe area - because the entire shoe is canvas - and the reinforcing ends right where the baby toe is. So in both pairs, on both shoes, holes are developing there. Ugh!!! I'm not paying $110 for a pair of shoes and have holes develop in 6ish months. I'll continue to wear them as long as I can but the holes are going to be the deal breaker. 

Anyway, I have decided that I want to start running again. Not a lot, I'm not going to do races, I just really do enjoy running, so I thought maybe instead of just walking I could do a short run once or twice a week. Also, running builds muscles in the legs and mine are pretty well shot from no real workouts for the past 6ish years. So I would like to make my legs stronger and that seems to be one of the simplest ways to do it. So a week or so ago, Roadrunner sports had their tent sale and we went. I bought some 'running' shoes that had lots of cushion and were super squishy. The first time I wore them my calves hurt, huh???  So I kept trying to wear them and my calves just did not like it.  I could not figure out why and so just kept on wearing the above shoes and trying to get used to the new ones. 

I'm doing a hip opener challenge with a yoga teacher and every night after the challenge - which is amazballs by the way - he does a little Q&A. I like to listen to the Q&A just to see if I can pick up any nuggets of information. A couple of nights ago, someone wrote in about shin pain when running and gave a description of the shoes he wears as zero drop shoes. It caught my attention just because shoes and running have been on my mind. The yoga teacher then explained what zero drop or minimalist shoes were and indicated that my shoe above is one of those. DOH!!!!! That was why the heavily padded ones were causing some calf issues. I've been wearing those shoes for well over a year now and my calves have gotten used to being lower, closer to the ground. So yesterday I went out and bought a pair of Altras, which are also minimalist shoes and have close to a zero drop for running. 

 As I said above, I love my Merrells but am not buying them knowing they will wear a hole in them pretty quick. 

So today is the inaugural run. I have not run in easily 3 years. I have not run seriously or regularly for 6 years. So this should be interesting. I'm doing a C25K program so that I can start really, really slow. I don't want to hurt myself and I don't want to overdo it in any way. We shall see how this goes. Wish me luck. 

26 November 2021

Gratitude Day 5

 Yesterday was Thanksgiving and apparently the one day of the year we are encouraged, no required, to express our gratitude for other people. I don't have a lot of gratitude for most people. Seriously. I find them to be petty and annoying and many times not worth the effort. Wow!! That sounds bad, but it's true. I have little use for the human race as a whole. However, there are lots of people that I like and enjoy being around. Yesterday some friends came over and it was fun. We sat around and watched the longest football game in the history of the world, seriously it seemed to take forever and then it went into overtime!!!! But it was nice, just talking, relaxing, watching football. Then we ate a good meal. It was really nice. I'm grateful for the friends and the opportunity to sit around and relax and enjoy. 

I'm also grateful for the friends I have at work. I don't make friends easily, see the above paragraph, but I've made some friends at work that I really enjoy and they definitely make life easier at school. 

I'm super grateful for the kids I get to teach. Yes, they are frustrating and annoying and many days I want to throw my hands up and walk away. But they are also funny and smart and generally fun to be around. Plus I really do love what I do. I love teaching. It is absolutely what I'm meant to be doing. 

Okay, I think that is enough for today.  I'm kind of gratitude out after this week. I can see this being a thing but I need to maybe pick one thing every day instead of writing a whole blog post. Maybe a gratitude thing at the end of a post. 

25 November 2021

Gratitude Day 4

 Is it gratitude if you feel that you have outgrown your mentor? I've been a part of DMSC for years now, years. I learned a lot from it and I've grown tremendously as a person. But I'm beginning to feel like it's just repetition now and I'm not sure it's best for me. Maybe I need to start over with it. Maybe I've gotten too comfortable with it and need to do a kind of hard reset with it. Hmmmmmm.....but I'm so very grateful for all I have learned and how much I've grown. It's hard to see in me, but I can see it when I look at others and their actions, so I am very grateful for that. 

I'm grateful for ........ oh, this is a tough one now. I'm extremely grateful for the life I live. I started out as a young adult on a not very good path in life. I had zero interest in the future and lived just for the moment. I did a lot of drugs and wasted a lot of money. Jimmy Buffett has a line in a song, I made enough money to Miami but I pissed it away so fast. That's how I felt. Thankfully I grew up before things got really, really bad and changed my ways. It has still taken years and years to recover from, but I'm in a really good place now and that makes it all worthwhile. 

What else am I grateful for. Well, I'm grateful for everything. For example, I'm grateful to be overweight. I truly am. That means that I have enough money for plenty of food and I have the luxury of time to eat it. Nothing is chasing me, or making me run or move a lot. The only way I could be overweight is if I live such a comfortable life and I'm grateful for that. 

I'm grateful for all the stuff I see when I look around this room. Wow, that sounds bad. I'm not grateful for the stuff per se, I'm grateful that money isn't a big issue. It's such a small issue that I can waste it on lots of things. Okay, that didn't come out exactly the way I had hoped it would. 

Okay, that's enough for today. 

24 November 2021

Gratitude Day 3

 This morning I am grateful for being able to sleep in. Yesterday was the last day of school for the week and I was tired. I've had to do a reset on my class and kind of didn't know what I was doing, so it took a lot of work from me these past 2 days. I have the next 5 days off and I'm going to use that time to prep the last 3 weeks of school so that I don't feel this tired again. So I am very grateful that I got to sleep in this morning and rest. 

I'm also grateful for this mindfulness that I've found. I have a good friend at work who I love dearly, but when we are in groups she always seems like she has to be 'on'. She has to try and make a funny comment about everything that is being said. I say tries to be funny because many times she falls flat. I feel kind of sorry for her sometimes. She can't just enjoy the conversation but has to insinuate herself into it in some way. She also has a habit of turning every single comment made into something about her. I'm grateful for this mindfulness because I'm not sure I would have noticed this before. I do love her and I enjoy hanging out with her, but I enjoy it more when it is just the 2 of us and she acts normal and is not 'on'. 

By the same token, I'm very grateful that I've made some real solid friends at work. We lunch together every day and it's the few minutes in my day when I am not the leader and can sit back and just listen. I sometimes don't interact much but I very much enjoy the whole thing and it's a nice break to be able to deal with adults for a while. Definitely grateful for the group I lunch with. 

Overall very grateful for the group I work with too. I'm in my 6th year at this school and have zero desire to leave. After the toxic environment of my first school, I can most definitely appreciate the environment here. And I like it. It's been a rough year but I know that we will get through this and things will improve. It will probably never be the same as before COVID but we will survive and thrive. 

Interesting how this post progressed. Kind of just let my mind go with the gratitude to see where it took me and I like it. 

23 November 2021

Gratitude Day 2

 Today I am grateful for my ability to problem solve and roll with the punches. I have a class that is just driving me absolutely crazy. Yesterday I did a hard reset with them. I laid out the rules - again - and raised the stakes. No more being nice, time to bring the hammer down. I did this to all of my biology classes. One class did not take it well, the other took it really well. It was amazing. Overall it went well. But I am grateful that I have the ability to problem solve and to work out complex situations and come up with solutions. Not everyone can do that so I am extremely grateful for that ability. 

I'm also incredibly grateful for 2 day work weeks. I don't want them all the time, but occasionally they are amazing. Especially this week, time to rest and recharge. 

I guess that's it today. It is Tuesday and the last school day of the week so yay!!!!  Looking forward to a relaxing weekend. 

22 November 2021

Gratitude Day 1

 This comes around every few weeks but now that I actually have a blogging habit, I think I can stick with it. Now the instructions are to do this for 3 minutes, I'm going to do my regular 10, and to get some real gratitude, not surface, fluffy stuff. So here goes.......

I am grateful that I live in a place that is relatively safe. I don't have to worry about my life being threatened or taken on a daily basis. At least in general. No where is completely, 100% safe, but I definitely live in a place that comes close. 

I am grateful for my 4A class. They are challenging and frustrating, but they are also forcing me to grow as a teacher and examine my methods. This is good because the real true enemy is the comfort zone. 

I am grateful that I so enjoy the place I work at (except maybe for 4A). I have worked at toxic places where the staff bonded together out of a mutual dislike and distrust of the administration. Working here, where most people truly enjoy working here, is refreshing and makes work fun to go to. 

I am grateful that I have the money to get Bella the surgery she needs. For most of my life I would have been really hard pressed to come up with that much money, but because of growing and learning, I have that money and can get it done for her. 

Which leads to the next topic, I am grateful for being able to grow and learn. I see too many people stuck where they are either in the life or just in their minds. It's sad to see. I understand how it can happen, hell, it happens to me too. But I am super grateful for the ability to see it when it does happen and the ability to change things up. Nothing is impossible. But you have to be open and willing to not only see these things but change them. 

That is good for today. As I was typing this I came up with one of those things I need to be able to see and change. I need to not get frustrated, but look at it as a chance to grow and learn. 

Gratitude Day 7

 This gets harder and harder as the week goes on. I don't want to just do trite stuff, I'm grateful for my family and my job, blah, ...