As I begin this post, I am hesitant how to approach it. I am transparent and authentic. I am honest. I am real. My life is pretty much an open book, but writing about this really shows my vulnerability; however, I know other people are going through this or will be and I want to share in hopes of comforting someone else who might need it.
I treasure learning new things. I crave reflection time and value the growth process. I love feedback to facilitate my growth. Then…it actually happened. (I know what you are thinking…everyone loves change until it means they have to change. This is not that at all.) Time has passed and I can now write about this without crying. 😉
To sum it up, I wanted something and I didn’t get it. As a reflective learner and one who loves to grow, I asked for feedback. I asked a person I have the highest respect for as a person and educator. This person asked me, “I know you asked for feedback because you are a reflective person and want to grow, but do you really want the feedback? I was surprised for a minute because I had never been asked this question before, but after reading Thank You for the Feedback I see the value in this.
Of course, I wanted the feedback! I expected it to be something I already pinpointed about myself, but it was not. To be honest with you, today I cannot even recall much of the conversation because all I heard was the one sentence that I took straight to the heart and personally. As a matter of fact, I probably blocked all the positive from that conversation and replayed the one sentence in my mind.
My reason: it was feedback over something I viewed as something I had NO control over. It was just me. There was nothing I could do about it. Or so I thought.
I cannot tell you the amount of tears I shed over this. At the time, I can remember saying to my friend many times, “I am not sure why I am so upset over this!” – while I sobbed to her over the phone and in person. A very wise, professional colleague, and one that I look to for advice often asked about this and I told him I did not get it. He asked why I was upset and I told him I don’t really know. Then he hit me with the bomb, “You just aren’t used to being told no.” WHAT?! I may have gasped out loud right there, given him the stink eye, but then said, “You know what, you are right!” That was just one reason.
Once I had time to go through some of the grieving stages, I revisited the feedback that I felt was personal and I had no control over. Here is where it got real, friends. I had two choices:
A.) Have a pity party and disregard the feedback from the person.
B.) Dig deep. Look inside and figure out how to accept, learn from this, and come out stronger.
I chose B….and it was the BEST (and hardest) personal and professional growth that I have ever gone through.
The events that unfolded after this revealed God’s bigger plan for me. We always say that things work out like they are supposed to. I know to trust God’s plan, but it is sure way harder to actually do! Here is what would have never happened had I gotten what I thought was best for me at that moment.
- I would have never gone for my administration certification.
- I would have never met my principal mentor, who turned out to be a precious friend that came at just the right moment in my life.
- I would have never realized that teaching middle school is where I need and want to be right now.
- I would have never gotten the middle school ELA teaching position at the exact middle school I wanted to be in.
- I would have never learned what the saying, “Be patient and trust God’s timing.” really feels like.
- I would have never realized how amazing it feels to choose to work through a very tough time (that other people do not even realize you are going through) and come out wiser, stronger, and happier.
I sit here writing this now (a year later) and can say with a huge smile that it was a hard thing to go through, but WOW….I am exactly where I want and need to be. I know this and it just feels right. 🙂
Life is more than good, friends! It is AMAZING! Trust the timing.