Friday, August 26, 2011

The Power of Prayer

As the third week of school comes to an end, I am reminded that God makes so many things possible if you open your heart to him and ask for his help (And no I am not talking about getting Internet back).

I guess my whole outlook on life in general has been evolving over the past year. I know that our journey has helped and hindered the growth at different points. I fought so hard to give up the battle and in the end, I have realized that it is SO MUCH easier now that I have.

A sweet friend at work this week, stopped and told me how pretty I have looked since school started, that she thought maybe I had lost weight. Of course then she was like not that you haven't looked pretty in the past lol. But it got me to thinking, you know last school year my mind was in such a fog with the failed attempts with fertility drugs, which in turn sent me into a nose dive. I gained weight, was probably depressed, wasn't too happy really. I was just trying to keep my head above water.

I think my positive changes started around Lent. Now, not being Catholic, I didn't have to give anything up, but I always try to see if I can do it. I mean after all, Jesus gave his life for me, can't I give him 40 days of something? I always struggle with what to give up, so this year I chose to give back in a sense and give up for myself. I decided I would focus my prayer on all those trying to have a baby or who were pregnant to have good pregnancy and healthy babies in the end. Apparently, I should have included myself in this prayer. Before Lent was over everyone I knew was pregnant. Now I know it wasn't just from my prayer, but I know it helped. In fact it totally helped me give up the obsessive thoughts and such about being pregnant and/or having a baby. Yes the desire was still there, but it didn't consume my life.

I think I started being happier. I didn't have pregnancy envy to bad to start with, but I definitely didn't have it anymore. I started feeling truly alright with the fact that we weren't the next to announce we were pregnant.

I want to point out the major factor here is that prayer helped me to be a happier person, as well as give me the strength to move on ( I guess that is the word for it). I stared focusing on prayer even more when Patiently Waiting Kinda posted about a Novena. Now being Methodist, I didn't know much about it, but when I read her post on it, something said hey google this and see if it something you can do with her. So, I did. I have been doing my own kind of Novena. It really has helped me focus my mind on prayer for needs and prayers of thanksgiving. I think sometimes as a human we forget to thank him for all the things he has given us. It also made me set aside a time to pray. In the past it was so sporadic and really just like in the car driving or when things came to mind.

During this time of praying for needs I prayed for my sweet friend and realtor, who was diagnosed with uterine cancer a few weeks after we listed our house. She has just gone back to work, had surgery and they got it all and she didn't even have to have chemo or radiation. I prayed for our friends with a baby in the way and an adoptive baby on the way. Their sweet MJ was born at 32 weeks this past weekend. She is absolutely precious and seems to be holding her own. Of course I prayed for our journey down the road to adoption, and selling our house and finding a new one. I could go on and on and on, but the point is that through my focused prayer I have seen prayers be answered. And even if they aren't for me, it is reassuring.

Now back to school, I have the sweetest little friends in my class this year. One in particular has suffered a traumatic brain injury this past spring (noncancerous brain tumor). He is a little fire cracker! I know that God hand picked him for my class. He never ceases to amaze me daily. He is so determined and doesn't give up. He wants his independence back and he just makes me smile everyday. He is so vivacious and caring. I just hope and pray that we will have a kiddo like him someday. But his journey humbles me. To go through what he has gone through at 9 years old is amazing. I have to say, if you ever need perspective, go into an elementary school classroom for a day. My kids really help me see, that there is so much more to life than the things we tend to worry about. So what if you don't have the best everything... it's not about the material things. Its about the difference you make in someone's day, week, life.

So when it is all said and done, prayer has gotten me through my life thus far, but when I needed Him most/ recently, He has transformed my life and now I am free. I don't want to go back to the life I had before! Every day I try to be more and more like Him.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Error: You aren't connected...

We are currently without internet at home and so I am currently "unavailable" to blog. :( So, every night I go home and open my laptop and I get the "you are currently not connected to the internet" message before I remember DUH! You don't have internet right now.
So, short and sweet style...

I am praying for my prayer buddy!!! I hope mine is praying for me too :) if you are reading this you can totally add internet to my list haha. No really, I hope the prayer buddies are getting as much out of this as I am! Every time I think oh I need prayers, I smile and think of my buddy praying for me. I can feel the prayers!

I am hoping we will have the internet back up and going SOON! I am lost without blog updates and internet. I know I can use my phone but these 32 yr old eyes just can't do it for long before I feel cross eyed! So, I haven't dropped off the face of the Earth... Just in a holding pattern for internet to get fixed.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Calm after the storm

Well I wish I was talking about all the rain that we were supposed to have last week... but I am not cause we didn't get much at all. (thinking I should have gone into weather predicting though, because apparently you really don't have to know what you are talking about)

Last week was the start to my 10th year teaching... Yes I started teaching when I was 10.. lol (that so sounds like something my mom would say lol) I was super excited about the start of this new year, had FABULOUS feelings that this was going to be the best year yet. Well, the beginning of the week was a tad bit tough. Probably the lack of sleep, more work than used to since I didn't do much this summer, or maybe just trying to get into the swing of things. I was actually in tears on Wednesday and Thursday.

But after all the drama I call back to school funk, I received 2 emails, 1 from a teacher and 1 from my boss thanking me for including one of my sweeties and letting me know they appreciated my positive attitude towards the student and that I have really made a difference in the student's life already, etc... I of course was right back to the bawling. Which leads me to this post.

One of my husband's aunts posted this on earlier today.
Salary of House/Senate .......................$174,00​0 FOR LIFE
Salary of Speaker of the House ............$223,500 FOR LIFE
Salary of Majority/Minority Leaders ...... $193,400 FOR LIFE
Average Salary of a teacher ................ $40,065
Average Salary of Soldier DEPLOYED IN AFGHANISTAN $38,000
I think we found where the cuts should be made! If you agree... RE-Post.

Now, I am in no way shape or form trying to say that teaching is remotely the same as fighting for our country in Iraq or Afghanistan, but it does have some similarities. I think that both are not paid for the amount of work and expertise they both entail. There are always people who want to talk negatively about both... and some positives too, but you don't hear about them as much. But on a topic I know well, I really think that teachers are truly responsible for where everyone goes in life, whether it be Walmart, McDonalds, a law firm, the white house, or even the military. We have a job that should be held with high respect, expectations, and responsibility. I take this responsibility so very seriously. We got our test scores back and had them to review mid week. Well lets just say they momentarily deflated my FABULOUS out look on this school year. "The Test & scores" have become more about the teacher's abilities than what the students have learned. See, no matter how hard you teach, its not you taking that test. There are so many variables. Now, this is not to say my scores were bad, they just weren't what I thought they would be, and because I take my job so seriously, it upset me... A lot actually. I started doubting my teaching. Thinking maybe I was too focused on baby Robbins (of which were all fruitless efforts), or maybe I made too many cakes, or maybe I made some the kiddos nervous. I am a terrible test taker, so I know how important it is to not be stressed. That was darkness trying to set in. And I wont lie, there for about 24 hours, I let it.

So anyway, I am probably preaching to the choir, but teachers have the weight of the world on their shoulders and this week that weight was a little too much for me. Then God saw that it was too much and inserted those sweet kind words to lift me up and let me know that I am making a difference. It isn't just about academics. Its how you make kids feel about themselves, its the fact that you make them feel safe, its about the confidence you give them (even when yours is not 100%), its about making learning fun so they want to do it, its the love for your job no matter how hard or how many GLEs, SPIs, & check for understandings there are to teach in 180 short days (for those non teaching readers GLE - grade level expectations and SPI state performance indicators - the standards we must hit that are tested on state test). I am going to remember these things to help calm me down the next time I wig out about the pressures of teaching. I was born to be a teacher, this is the gift God gave me, and my gift to Him is to do my best and make a difference.

disclaimer - if there are parts that don't make sense, I was watching the Cardinals game and kind of was in an out... I can't fault my kiddos for not staying focused... I can't do it either lol

Sunday, August 7, 2011

birthdays as you get older...

Ok, I totally expect that my birthdays will be the same as always no matter what age and this year is proving this idea WRONG!!!!

I know as you get older your birthdays really aren't that important anymore. Well being a teacher it really puts a cramp in partying it up, when you celebrate a birthday the day before the school year starts... so Saturday seems like the best option. I love love love Hibachi food. So we have always gone to a local joint, Nagasaki Inn her in Memphis. It has always been great, and I have told everyone they want to go there.... Well until this year.

Aside from feeling older, still no children, part of my Birthday party pregnant, I was going to live it up and requested the head guy to do my dinner. Well, started out with a 35 minute wait (with reservations), set at two separate tables, with two separate waitresses, ours was LESS the good. Apparently 2 other tables requested the head guy as cook so he took none of us, but took the opposite table of my party instead. Our waitress was terrible, our bill was 30 dollars more than last year with the same things ordered.... need I go on. I left there thinking not only was I robbed of my money, but my time with friends cause we were separated.

My sweet friend mentioned getting Mexican ice cream from down the street, we went but they were closed... I mean really. Is this what my birthdays are going to be from now on??? We went to a pub with one of my sorority sisters afterwards, but by that point my husband was over it and ready to go home... I AM NOT THAT OLD... WTH?!?!?!?

So, now I am home with a beer in hand wondering what the heck happened to the good old days when I could go out and have fun, get a buzz, and enjoy my birthday dinner????

I guess I need to wake up and smell the roses... I am just getting OLD and birthdays mean nothing anymore than another year older and childless... :(