As for just about everyone on the planet, making it through 2020 was an all-around different experience than anything I have been through before. While I realized after my word found me and placing the year in with the graphic I made FOCUS 2020 was a really poor pun, however, I can’t change my word once it finds me. If ever I needed to FOCUS this was the year.
I’m not always sure of the reason behind a specific word-finding me, yet, for 2020 I had to FOCUS; at least January through May. I was finishing up a principal licensure program through the University of Denver. The program was intense and I needed to FOCUS to complete the program. I am happy to announce that I successfully completed the program in May. Due to COVID, our final project was a 5-minute presentation explaining our Leadership Journey.
As with the rest of the United States, March brought on a whole new challenge and need to FOCUS. Being thrown into the world of remote working was taxing, demanding, and challenging. Learning how to navigate teaching five to eleven-year-old children via a remote setting, “going into” their homes, and really working with nothing was the biggest challenge I had undertaken in my career. However, a great deal was learned, by adults and children. Due to our learning, rethinking, and tenacity, we are able to approach remote teaching and learning at a higher level and it is better, not easier, but better. I was excited to head back to face to face teaching, even with all the restrictions, in August. Having a new skill set and knowledge base with remote teaching and learning made it much easier to move to remote when needed. Here’s hoping that we are able to get back to face to face teaching and learning while keeping all individuals safe as soon as possible in 2021.
Having more time to FOCUS on me, my family, and my overall health were positives from this crazy 2020 year. Early in January, I had signed up for a challenge through the Under Armor app entitled “You vs. the Year 2020”. The goal was to walk, hike, run, bike, etc. 1020 kilometers in the year. On March 17th, I started really getting out to walk, jog, or hike in earnest. Prior to March 17th, I had logged 39.34 miles, I hadn’t accomplished much; that all changed. By December 30th I had logged 175 workouts for 856 kilometers (532.4 miles).
I also got out and hiked more than I ever have. From June to December I went for 17 hikes. Making it out to many different locations than I have been on before. I love being in the mountains, and having the time to focus on whatever my brain is needing to process through is a relief.
In July my family life took a turn. My daughter came home in June from going to see her boyfriend, who is in the Army, stating they were going to get married. They needed to wait for base housing to come through. Well, the Army moved faster than any of us expected, and three days after submitting paperwork they were told they had a house and could move in July 15th. Which meant they had to marry before then. So, July 7th I gained a son-in-law, and on July 17th, I moved my daughter to a different state so she could be with her husband. I am proud of them, they are learning to working their way through life, just like the rest of us.
2020 has been a year of firsts, some cherished and others that caused stress, but this is life. I have learned through my year of FOCUS that I need to care for myself, to really cherish friends and family, and that best-laid plans can disappear in a heartbeat. Yet, we can make it through as long as we focus on the here and now because, in the long run, that is really what matters.