I wasn't going to slice this year. Life has been a bit much-- hybrid teaching with kids remote and kids in person half day, and coaching teachers the other half day, taking Spanish classes two nights a week so that I can be more effective at my job, parenting two semi-adult/adult sons who are struggling mightily, being the daughter to an 87-year-old mom who had a major health crisis in February, training a service dog puppy-- it just seemed like plenty. And so I decided I wasn't going to slice this year.
As recently as yesterday, when I read several people's Facebook posts and tweets about getting ready to slice, I wasn't going to slice. Last night, when I went to bed, I wasn't going to slice. This morning, when I woke up, I wasn't going to slice. I really wasn't. I just don't have time or energy to spin one more plate this year.
Then, somehow, this morning, when I was having my coffee, I wandered over to TWO WRITING TEACHERS. Just to check out some of the slices. Over fifty people had already posted. I recognized some names, but there were lots of newcomers too. I remembered how much I loved reading other people's slices. Following old friends. Making new friends. Getting wrapped up in some people's stories and following their blogs for the entire month. Dipping into other people's stories just one or two times. Marveling at people's creativity and craftsmanship. Trying to steal some of their moves to up my own game.
And then I went back and read a few of my slices, ok, actually most of my slices, from last year. And then a few from previous years. I've been slicing for almost ten years, so I had a lot to choose from. In 2011, when I started slicing, I was administrative assistant at an inner city school, parenting two high school sons, and chasing my two Houdini Labs around the neighborhood. There were lots of single parent posts, and posts about disciplining kids at school (I wasn't very good at it because I always laughed). Rereading some of them, I still laugh.
And now, in 2021, much has changed, but much has stayed the same. I'm still teaching, one of the last of my friends, I think, that hasn't retired, but I still really, really love the kids; and I don't want to retire. I'm still doing the single parenting thing, and my sons, who I adopted at 7 and 9, are now 25 and 27, and still struggling to launch. I'm still the mom of two dogs-- but Ramsey, and Maggie, and Jack, and most recently Star have all crossed the Rainbow Bridge, and now there's Rooney, the two-year-old yellow lab that's only kind of mine, and Galaxy, the German Shepherd mix puppy I adopted in November. And there are still stories about trying to figure out my relationships with my mom and sisters...
I wasn't going to slice, but somehow I couldn't imagine not sharing stories. Not being a part of the slicing community.
And so I clicked on the link to fill out the participation form. Here we go again...