As I was trying to gather my thoughts this evening, I saw this post that someone had shared on Facebook from Education to the Core. What I was struggling to put into words, this picture sums up perfectly. By the end of each day, this is currently how I feel. Why? Because I care.
On the surface caring seems like a great thing. It’s good to care about others and to follow the golden rule of doing unto others as you would have them do to you. It can also be absolutely exhausting. On a typical day, these are things (some overlap and many occur multiple times) that I care about at some point during the day:
- Am I being a good mom to LilKsby even though I’m so tired when I get home that there are days I just want to sit and stare at the wall?
- Am I being a good wife Mr Kisby by helping around the house and with LilKsby?
- Am I going to feel worse about going to bed early and getting physical rest than I would if I did everything I need to get done?
- Am I disappointing others when I’m not good company to be around because I’m so exhausted (and some days defeated feeling) after work?
- Am I disappointing others when I say “no” to things?
- Am I protecting my family from the virus the best I can while maintaining some “peace of mind”?
- Am I not looking at the costs of short term “peace of mind” in the long term picture?
- Am I selfish for wanting time to “do nothing” and attempt to just relax and have fun?
- Am I the only one wearing a mask in public because I care about the health of those around me?
- Am I the only one that hasn’t resumed all “normal” activities because there’s still a pandemic going on in the world?
- Am I doing any good by washing my clothes and showering as soon as I get home?
- Am I following the most correct, most up to date guidance from trusted officials?
- Am I the only one that five weeks into school still feels like I don’t know what’s really going on around me on pretty much a daily basis?
- Am I protecting my students from Covid?
- Am I cleaning their work areas thoroughly enough?
- Am I forgetting to clean things that should be obvious high touch points?
- Am I sanitizing my own hands enough to prevent spread?
- Am I sanitizing my hands so much that it scares my students?
- Am I instructing my students in a way that is effective while protecting them from illness?
- Am I sanitizing the Chromebook that I take from class to class enough?
- Am I doing a good enough job of hiding my emotions every time a student asks a “what if” scenario that I don’t know how to answer?
- Am I being a good model in regards to mask practices?
- Am I following every “normal” school policy while also implementing all the pandemic policies?
- Are my students getting their basic needs met (adequate food, shelter, etc) on their “at home” days?
- Am I the only one who wants to shut off thoughts about the day and enjoy home once there that can’t do it?
I fully realize that sometimes right now it may seem like I don’t care. The truth is the exact opposite. I care so much that it is absolutely exhausting emotionally and mentally (sometimes physically) on a daily basis. I think that’s why I like being home so much and find it fun to engage in virtual activity. It allows me to attempt to forget my cares, which could be interchanged with my worries, for just a fraction of time within the safety of my own home.
So until the pandemic quells, I’m going to do my best to not be like Kermit in the meme as I know no one will ever go for work a day, off a day, work a day, off a day schedule. I’m going to attempt to do my best for others while not neglecting myself, and I’m going to try to be the best me I can be. Wish me luck!
The Great Kaysby