I probably mentioned this 100 times, but I’m doing the Lotus and the Lily soul program for the third time. One of the last days, has you think of a movie title that describes your life. My immediate thought was like, River Lo; Goes with the Flow. After much thinking, I knew that I’m not there yet, my resistance is strong at times.

So, thinking about the past year.. the movie title I came up with, is: Gimme, Gimme.

It was about a year ago, I took Reiki I and II classes and vowed to heal myself. Lisa, my teacher, talked about purging old emotions, including not only my own trauma, but my ancestors trauma as well.

But, that’s not what I really did.

I continuously looked outside for the answer. Physical therapy, grounding, vibrating plate, rebounder, massager, sauna… if it promised to purge toxins and/or cure pain, then I was fully vested.

And I still catch myself doing it.

And while I did do a good job of staying on the AIP diet, I never gave up cacao- which I was supposed to (according to most AIP diets. Some allow it- which is why I was okay keeping it-plus I knew it would help me be successful with this diet). I reintroduced eggs, but probably not properly, but kept eating them anyway. Having eggs made the diet a bit easier too.

I think you know the rest of the story. August was too busy- I went back to eating the standard American diet and stopped cleansing with juices and smoothies. And now it’s December, and I’m still here.

Some days I eat great, until nighttime. Some days I hardly eat at all, until nighttime. And some days I eat junk all day long. Those days are rare, thank goodness!

The confusing part is that I feel SO much better than I did in the summertime. I’m still sore and some days its hard to get up and down. Most days I feel almost normal with motrin. For weeks now, I usually only take motrin or tylenol in the morning. It’s hard to believe that I was taking both 3-4 times daily very regularly over the spring and summer. My weight is back to normal (I gained 20 pounds when my leg edema was at its worst), and I feel like I can start working out again.

And I have crazy thoughts of doing that diet again! I know I need to work on it, but am pretty scared now of picking up bad symptoms- like edema. I keep thinking that I’ll just cut out dairy and gluten and start with those. That would be fairly doable and when I brought it up to my hubby, he mentioned that he would do it with me and that he wants to eat better too. Starting it is a whole nother thing.

I hate that this is so cliche, but I just have January in my head as a starting. With holiday festivities coming up, it seems pointless to try to crack down. I’m going to do the best that I can. I want to start training for that half marathon in April. I’ll start working out again over break- and will start slow and gradually increase. I can’t wait until I can run again!

Plus, life has been insane with work lately. I started the new schedule with my new classes this week. The kids are doing great, and seem to be happy and comfortable. The adults, could take a lesson from the children.

That was mean. “Kindness made me kind.” is the affirmation I use when my mean comes out.

It’s been an adjustment for everyone. And really, for the most part, everyone has been great. There are little hiccups here and there, but they are getting smoother everyday. I even got observed this week- I think even twice!

I couldn’t tell you exactly what I was doing the first time, except teaching writing to the self-contained class across the hall. These students have significant disabilities, but I’ve been teaching them writing all year, so we’re into a routine and I’m sure the observation went fine. The second time was yesterday, Friday. It was very busy when she came. I had 5 students in my room and 3 parapros. They oversaw the students working while I pulled two students aside to give them quick assessments. I think it went well, except that my newest student continued to grab at my mask every time I got near him. It was so annoying, lol, but in his defense, it’s the first time I wore a mask with him there. She knew what would be going on, and I think was impressed.

I never felt as nervous as looking at her in her apprehensive eyes and assuring her that I’m okay with this class change and think that it truly is the best thing to do (she is new to our district too, and this is quite different than what we did pre-pandemic times). I’m glad she saw it so busy and running well.

Besides all the kinks, I’m really liking this new schedule and groups. I enjoy teaching and had time to do read-alouds this week and create corresponding activities that practiced different skills. It felt so much less rushed and so much more productive than before. I feel like a real teacher and even will have papers to bring home and grade sometimes 😊

I’m really connecting with the students and learning what gets me excited now- like when I’ve been trying to teach a 2nd grader all year long to differentiate between adding and subtracting and he not only does it independently now, but I’ve caught him catching a mistake with a tool I printed for him and it gives me that joyous feeling!

One of my favorites is my youngest, M. She was my most difficult student in the beginning and I was pretty terrified of her. She was awful. She didn’t want to come with me half the time, and whined and argued with everything. She has speech apraxia and you can’t understand her words which made it even harder.

Let’s go back to the very first day of my new job. I woke up to an owl hooting. I took it as a good sign that I was where I was supposed to be and thought it was a good omen.

At some point, M discovered a stuffed owl I’ve had in my classroom since last year. I let her play with it and we made a game out of her hiding him for the next student and finding him when she comes in. The owl was our turning point.

A month later, M was routinely knocking on my door on her way to the bus- just to give me a hug. Her parapro would apologize for interrupting, but M was persistent. And no one could have known that I needed that hug more than her.

I kind of laugh when I look back at the beginning. I seemed so incompetent and didn’t know anything- but it’s amazing how quickly we can learn and grow. Some things are still hard, but I love it at my new school. And I LOVE my five minute drive! I dream of the days that I ride my bike to and from work. It never happened this fall because of leg edema, but if I keep improving, I can ride when winters over.

That’s about it. All is well. But I still stuff my face at night ❤

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