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It’s mid-February so I’m a month and half into living out my #OneWord2019 and I’m finally getting around to sitting down and writing this. That alone though is a huge feat for me simply because it’s been a hot minute since I’ve sat down to write a blog post or anything other than something I’ve had to write for work or my doctoral program. However, conquering this feat is part of living out my #OneWord2019 – ROOTS.

When I first started out on this “connected” journey as an educator I have to admit it was more so because I was trying to be proactive to not have to interact with parents so much and then that led me to start finding this whole other network. This network allowed me to begin a new path of learning and start establishing relationships with these new connections. As I began to connect I began to share and was encouraged to start blogging. And that is where so much of my growth and real journey as an educator began, my roots.

For those who don’t know much about me, I grew up in a small town. Though our small town has now grown into a small city, the small town feel is still very real and a huge part of who we are as a town. Growing up in a town that had one high school until after I graduated instilled different kinds of roots for me to grow from just as the start of my education career. For those who know my career journey or have been following along with it as I’ve been a connected educator it has had an interesting path and has gone places I’ve never imagined it would ever go or be.

As a kindergartener back in 1994, the last place I wanted to go was school. My family can tell some fun stories of getting me to just go to school (like the ice cream sundae snack day debacle that ended with a busted jar of maraschino cherries all over the main hall of Ann Parish Elementary) but eventually a love of school grew (despite the declined marriage proposal to my kindergarten teacher Ms. Kelley). That love grew so strong I discovered my passion for teaching and desire and aspiration to one day become a teacher. As I grew older I continued to have that passion for school and loved learning and had desire to become a teacher when I grew up. In middle and high school that love and passion faded some as I got more into sports and social things. I would fight the urge to become a teacher and wanted to pursue physical therapy. As I got into college I went through some dark times and eventually dropped out. It was when I stepped into a classroom as a substitute during that time that I saw some light and I remembered my passion and love and knew I needed to get back in school and pursue what was rooted deep inside me: teaching. I got back to my roots.

So, here I am again at the start of a new year and I find myself in some dark times again personally. I made some choices recently to pursue some new opportunities and ventured down some new roads. At the end of the day I have to ask myself some questions about what is really inside me and get back to my roots. Which brings me to my #OneWord2019 “roots”. As 2019 unfolds I’m going to get back to my roots. It started with accepted an offer to return a school district that has given me so much, where a lot of years of growth occurred and the root of principalship began as the new lead learner at a new school. I moved back to my hometown into the house I built on my own a few years ago to root myself back into my community where I was born and raised. Getting back to the roots of the things that make me happy like fitness. And with relaunching my blog and getting back to my roots of sharing my journey and my learning with others. So many roots running deep in me to tap into and nourish and grow in 2019… who knows what other roots running deep in me are going to flourish and began peeking out of the soil this year…

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