365 Days of Me, Part 2

Jeanne A. Curley

In “365 Days of Me, Part 1″, I shared my plan to reconnect with myself over the next 365 days. So far, my plan includes a healthy body and a healthy spirit. Here is the rest of what I will be targeting.

Money is another area of focus. I am blessed with a husband that knows a lot about this area and he has taught me quite a bit. I probably know more than the typical almost 50 year old but it’s not the most interesting area of engagement for me. I have tried so many different ways to get interested, but nothing really sticks. I plan to do some exploring and find my money love connection. The Bible says that money is a defense and it answers all things (you can search those scriptures yourself on Google if needed) so I do want to develop a close and healthy relationship with it on a more personal level. We will see how this one goes.

The last area of personal development will be building Spanish fluency. I feel marginalized when I am surrounded by the Spanish language and that is a crummy feeling. My hubby and I will be traveling, so knowing the language will be a great plus. I also do not like NOT being able to have organic conversations with my Spanish speaking students and coworkers because of my limitations. I believe that most answers to most problems are in Step 1. My current teaching “problem” is being a better support to my students where Spanish is their first language. I have attended so many seminars and trainings on this topic, but nothing has really removed the barrier. For me, if the problem is that not being able to speak and understand Spanish with fluency is a barrier, Step 1 is for me is to learn how to speak and understand Spanish with fluency. Then, I think we will learn if there is even a need for a Step 2. So, my hubby and I are taking Spanish conversation classes together. I am really looking forward to that!

Why am I even sharing all of this information? Well, I think it is important to share the whole teaching experience and this is a part of it. Self-care is more than mindfulness and meditation and it looks different for everyone. In fact, I do not enjoy doing mindfulness exercises and yoga. They both make me want to either go to sleep or get up and move and I can usually do neither at that moment. But they are typically what is offered. Plus, it’s ok to be self-centered when you need to be. In doing so, you are preserving and restoring your best self and that is what those around you need.

It’s going to be interesting to see how my Year of Me plays out in the classroom. For example, the classes at my school do a Big Trip every year (pre-Covid) and I expect for them to resume next school year. They require a lot of planning and coordination and they are usually the highlight of the year for the kids and their families. I have already decided that I am not doing one because it will create the stress I am trying to decrease this year. That means that if it is going to happen in my class, parents and administration will need to take over the entire event from beginning to end. I have some awesome parents and administration staff, but I am still interested to see how that plays out. Also, things were not too peachy on my home front. When I announced my plan to focus on my needs for 365 days to my immediate family, my mom’s response was “But what about me?”.  Well, you know what I thought (but I didn’t say it).

So, if I am able to continue with this Arizona Stories from School blog, I expect to touch on this journey as it unfolds from time to time. I hope you are able to check in and hear about it. If not, have a blessed and safe summer. Love, peace, and chicken grease!

 

Yolanda Wheelington

Yolanda Wheelington

Phoenix, Arizona


Yolanda has taught for the past 7 years in the Phoenix Elementary School District. Her passion for developing and supporting the human potential is evident in the cross-curricular work done her classroom. She is a member of the Association Montessori International and is a RODEL Scholar. Yolanda earned a Bachelor’s in Psychology from The Catholic University of America (Washington, D.C.), a Master’s in Social Work and a Master’s in Education (Special Education) from Arizona State University, and a diploma in Lower Elementary Education for ages 6-12 from the Montessori Institute of North Texas.

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