Teaching in Kansas City, one day at a time.

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Nov 03 2013

Building Grit, I suppose…

It is said that grit is the most effective indicator of successful people.  There is a stronger correlation between grit and success than anything else. I don’t know if I’m particularly “gritty” or not, but luckily for me, grit can be built. I suppose this is what it feels like to build grit. To be honest, it sucks. I need to focus on having a growth mindset.

Friday was a horror.

At one point, my chest started hurting, the room started spinning, and I had to sit down. Thankfully there was a para in my room and I had her take over for a moment. This is happening more frequently. I get dizzy and lightheaded and really bad headaches. I suppose it’s from stress… not that I have that or anything. I meditate and pray daily, but it doesn’t seem to alleviate the intense crushing pressure on my chest and my head.

I am intensely underprepared for tomorrow, it’s only 6:40 PM, but my headache is getting more intense and this writing on the computer thing is not feeling too great.  I am going to go nap…

P.S. In the event that you are contemplating joining Teach for America, I’d recommend spending a lot of time in classrooms first. If you were just accepted, volunteer in inner city schools every day that you can, ask to learn the procedures that the teachers use, see what effective teachers do and what sucky teachers do… don’t just jump into this blind… it’s just a bad idea.

2 Responses

  1. At institute when I got dizzy and lightheaded I wondered if I was a bit anemic. I started eating high iron snacks while teaching and this helped. Of course, it didn’t solve my teaching problems but I no longer felt like I was collapsing.

    During TFA I stopped having my period, most likely due to stress, and there was not a quick obvious solution, so maybe your physical symptoms are best explained by stress.

    In any case, before you settle on the stress explanation for dizzy think about hydration and iron intake if you are not already :) I think all of these explanations are possible and personally, stress has never felt dizzy and lightheaded, but anemia and dehydration have.

    Stress absolutely feels like a crushing weight on my chest though.

    I’ve been praying every day. I keep making gratitude lists. I focus on the moment-the mountains I’m on, that my boyfriend is with me. But still, the weight comes back as soon as I’m not actively focused on moving it off me. Sometimes I start to feel like a crappy mediator/prayer because I think that I should be able to will myself happy and grateful, but I’m trying to be nicer to myself and forgive myself for not being able to accept everything I can’t change in a moment of prayer.

    I do agree with Daltongoodier that this will get better. I did know a CM who was clinically depressed and didn’t know it and things did not get better for her like everyone promised it would until she got on meds and got help in January. BUT, with that exception, I do think it will get better just from all the growth you are experiencing.

  2. daltongoodier

    It gets better.

    It gets so much better. Stick with it and keep working hard! The grit that you build today does pay off in the future, I promise you.

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Teaching for the first time… praying we all get out alive

Kansas City
Elementary School
Elementary Education

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