I will never forget “the call.”
This journey began for me with some encouragement from my assistant principal, Jen Bourque. “You should start a blog,” she told me one day in her office. “You have a lot to teach people.” So I did. And for all of you who have done this- you launched a blog- you will remember the exhilaration, the worry- will anyone think this is any good? Will anyone read what I write?
And then… my first retweet of a blog post! And from none other than the formidable and wonderful Fran McVeigh, a friend to many of us in the literacy community. I felt I had crossed a threshold. I was off to the races! as they say.
Flash forward a few years, when “the call” came. Turning the corner one overcast and otherwise normal school day, I began to make my way around the lake toward my home. Suddenly, I noticed a rather lengthy Direct Message pop up on my phone. Curious, I pulled over to read it. Opening up the message, I noticed it came Stacey Shubitz, the Chief of Operations of a blog I had been following for years entitled, “Two Writing Teachers.” She had extended an invitation to discuss a possible co-authorship position with the TWT Team. I felt similar exhilaration and worry- could I really take this on? I wondered.
It has now been three and a half years since that fateful message arrived. Since then, it has been my great honor and privilege to write alongside this amazing and dedicated team: Stacey, Betsy, Beth, Kathleen, Melanie, and recently Amy, Marina, and Therapi. This work has pushed me in some of the most gratifying ways, and for that I will always be grateful.
That said, a different “call” has now sounded: the time has come for me to depart from my role as co-author in the TWT Community. With new complexity posed by our current COVID reality, and a still-very-young family, I am finding that work-life balance now means deepening my focus within a shorter list of commitments. I want to thank Stacey for the opportunity to contribute here on Two Writing Teachers- Stacey, thank you for believing in me and the power of my writing. I also want to thank my co-authors, both past and present, for your support, inspiration, and collaborative spirit. It has been such a pleasure to work with you and read your work (which I will certainly continue to do!) You have all taught me what it means to perform a labor of love for the betterment of kids, teachers, coaches, and literacy. You gals rock!
Finally, I want to thank our readers. Please know your comments and retweets mean so much to me, and to all of us- especially now. It has been my honor to know that you have read and valued some of what I have written on this blog. I have learned so much from the insights, comments, and writing that you have shared with us over the years. I consider you all friends, even if I have never met you.
Let me close with a quote from E.B. White that I dedicate to all of you- readers, co-authors, commenters and non-commenters alike: “You have been my friend, and that in itself is a tremendous thing” (Charlotte’s Web, 1952).
I look forward to seeing some of you on Tuesday Slice of Life Story Challenge days.
Farewell friends and colleagues,