Reflecting From March to March- 3/22/2021

It seems hard to believe but we are now more than one year past March 13th, the day that everything changed. So much has changed in the past year, Last week, Lindsay Titus reflected about the changes from March to March on her podcast and challenged us to do the same. All of you know I can't resist a challenge and decided I couldn't end March without adding this post.

When I look back at my March 2020 posts, all of us were just trying to adjust to the "new normal." My son, a senior, and my daughter, an eighth grader, and I tried to adjust to school online, while my husband adjusted to teleworking from home. Everyone was full of fear- would we get COVID-19? How can you be safe? Some many questions and not enough answers. It was definitely a stressful time- there were so many unknowns.

As a tech coach, I was so excited about adding more creativity into instruction. I had just attended the Adobe Creative Educator Day and wanted to see how I could add more creativity into my technology classes. As the month progressed, I started to reflect on the what ifs of this new normal and tried to appreciate what life was and what will be. I had just done my first solo presentation at a district edtech conference. In March 2020, I also cohosted my first Twitter chat #NoVaEdChat. I was in the midst of my #oneword CHALLENGE and trying to write a book. But quickly, I found more CHALLENGES than I had bargained for.

Now in March 2021, so much has changed. Now, my son is a freshman at WVU and after a rocky first semester, he is having a much better second semester. My daughter is just started hybrid learning a few weeks ago. She is thriving despite all of the challenges the past year brought on. My husband is finally going into the office a few days a week. Life is seeming more "normal"

Professionally, the past year, the changes that occurred are unbelievable. On March 1, 2020, I had done one solo presentation at a district conference. Now as we get ready to end March, I will have presented at eighteen virtual conferences in the past year all across the country. That book I was starting to work on has a publishing contract and is in editing and will be published in a couple of weeks. The teachers at my school have grown immeasurably, the need for technology sparking a desire to learn more. Last week, we finally started hybrid instruction including all student K-6. It seems unbelievable that all this happened in just one year.

I couldn't end a March to March reflection without discussing how my PLN grew and the amazing connections I have made over the past year. As I shared in my 3/16/2021 post, there is truly magic in having a PLN. I am not sure that all of these connections and friendships that I have cultivated would have happened if things had been "normal." I am not taking away how horrible COVID is- I had it in mid September and it took me months to feel like myself again.

In chapter 8 of my upcoming book, TRANSFORM- Techy Notes to Make Learning Sticky I share my journey about how reaching beyond your expectations changes everything. What a difference a year makes when you face your fears, push past them and reach for the stars. Kick those self limiting beliefs to the curb and take a leap into the unknown while pushing towards your goals.