My COVID-19 Diary: Why write?

I’ve joked in previous posts about how little I am accomplishing during the quarantine. This is partially true, adapting the challenge of working from home has mediated any productivity I might have derived from having fewer “live” people around to distract and the lack of a commute that previously consumed about an hour of every day. If I have to give myself a grade for my performance during the quarantine, and why not, everyone seems to be grading themselves, I’d score myself a fairly generous “C+”.  

One thing I have managed to do is publish a blog post every day during the quarantine. I’m happy to have done so for a variety of reasons. I appreciate the opportunity to offer my reflections during this unusual time. It’s not that the Library of Congress is calling to include this blog in its collection but, yes, these are historic times. So much is beyond my power at this unprecedented time, but I have total authority over my writing.  I can’t govern when the quarantine will end or how I need to act during it. My older sons are quarantined, as is my dad, 86, struggling with dementia; I miss seeing them “in person”. Writing helps me to win control in a time when it’s easy to lose a sense of purpose and agency.

As a school leader, I welcome the opportunity to communicate and share the struggle with stakeholders. I’m not sure if my kids read my posts but some parents and members of the community do. It’s fun when, on the rare occasion when I do interact with them in person or virtually,  folks say something to me that indicates I’ve made a connection. Three different people last week reached out to tell me they have a version of the “Re-Wear Chair”. I’ve discovered a dozen others who also have Pelotons and enjoy sharing their rides with me. Some parents at my school reach out with cooking challenges; I have a wicked paella planned using a recipe from one of my 8th graders. Blogging regularly has helped me reconnect with the power of narrative. Sharing stories connects us with other people at the level of the heart as well as the mind. 

Hoping to keep going.  What are you doing to beat the quarantine? What’s your story?

About dfgately

Middle School Principal Jericho, NY
This entry was posted in Leadership, Random Thoughts, Reflections, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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