A Leap of Faith

Over the years, some of the skills that I have taught my students are to set goals but revise them as needed, finish what you started, take risks, and believe in yourself.  Now, as I look back at the weeks leading up to the holidays, I realize that I modelled each of these when I announced my retirement.

Already?  In some ways, I still feel too young to retire but, at the end of November, after Student-Led Conferences with my students and their parents, I realized that the time was perfect.  The winter break makes my retirement a natural transition for my students and I wanted that to be as smooth for them as possible. I was leaving on a high note:  I felt great about where my Grade 7 and 8 students were in their courses and their learning skills; parents were happy; kids were happy; I was happy….and we had a great cross-country season.  But I still agonized the entire weekend before giving notice about whether I should retire or not.  I was actually close to tears and I typically am not an emotional person.  I love my job and I love working with kids.  It is hard to walk away from something you love.

If the past few years have taught me anything, it is to cherish the time that you have.  I realize that my two young adults are not going to be in my home much longer as they are moving towards their careers and thinking about what their futures will be; I want more time with them and with Dave.  I know that my own clock is ticking and there are many, many things that I want to do while I am still fairly young and healthy.   So while I can’t stop time, I can grab it and hang on for as long as I can.

Today is officially the first day of my retirement.  I am thrilled to have more time with my family (and fur babies) and to be able to do the things I love.  I am excited about working towards my 2023 athletic and other goals.  I’m happy – really happy – and for some reason, I wasn’t expecting that.  Actually, I didn’t really know what to expect.

I have been nervous about this leap of faith and I still am. After all, I have never retired before.  But these nerves are like the ones I feel at the start of a race – excited and not really sure what is going to happen.  These are the nerves that will keep me moving forward.  They will keep me setting goals, working towards them, and adapting when I need to.  And just like starting a race, I know what I want, I know where I am headed, and I know what needs to be done.  I’ve got this.

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