Two Steps Forward, Three Steps Back

Although, like some of you thirty-somethings, the very title conjures up images of Paula Abdul dancing with some sort of crazy cartoon. Or am I just crazy…


Wait a second. Don’t answer that.

Do I wish when I first thought of the title today that I was thinking of this fun-loving song? Of course the answer would be a resounding YES.

Alas, I was not thinking of anything with this much hilarity. I was thinking after a tough day of teaching, “Why do some people (kids and sometimes me) take two steps forward and three back?” I just don’t understand it, yet really I do…

When I reflect on my life and think about the sum of all the decisions I have made, I have made a lot of positives steps forward, but I often find myself feeling further backward. I experienced this in full force with one of my students today. I asked her, “Why have you been struggling with your behavior so much lately?” She answered, “I am scared of going to third grade, the teachers are much stricter and I will really miss you.” It broke my heart, because I would love to move up with my students this year.

This has been one of my toughest years of teaching, because of a few factors. I am teaching in a school that has a much higher rate of poverty than what I am used to. This brings many different challenges than I had been used to where I previously taught. My students often struggle with getting their homework done and sometimes even pushing themselves to try on assessments. Oftentimes, my students’ parents can not make or afford special events at the school.

Today was a tough day, one where I took a few steps forward and walked back three or twenty.

Tomorrow, I will do better, I will love more and react less. I will remember that each of my students is a reflection of God’s love and so am I.


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