“Everybody has a voice. It’s just how you choose to use it.” Darin Johnston, TWT FB Live
It was my turn. I had listened and watched excitedly as Terje, Lisa, Sarah, Fran, Darin, Amanda, Donnetta (and of course Stacey and Betsy) speak so eloquently, proudly about slicing and the Two Writing Teachers community.
I listened in awe. I was hearing the voices of people that I had come to admire and “know” through their writing. I filled pages of my journal with their words. I wanted to remember. I wanted to be able to echo their thoughts and comments when my turn came.
There were tech glitches along the way. Stacey and Fran and Lisa handled them with ease. I added poise to my list of their admirable traits. Then my turn came. I was ready. Excited to celebrate the community of Two Writing Teachers and share how I’ve grown and encourage others join in!
Stacey introduced me and when I went to speak – it was sensory overload! My voice and Stacey’s voices echoed and overlapped and I couldn’t think!?! The sound was coming in one ear and then the other ear but delayed. I changed rooms hoping that would do the trick. I tried to adjust. No luck. I tried to focus and kept talking. I was flustered and then after it was over, I was frustrated. I was disappointed – disappointed that I had lost an opportunity to celebrate teacher as researcher, teacher as writer.
But as I sit to slice, I realize, the opportunity is not lost, just relocated from Facebook Live to Tuesday Slice of Life. So here is what this community has given and taught me –
- To be brave in going public. The TWT teachers became a place for me to go public with my words and my sketches. My audience had always been people who knew me, my teacher research group (s), my school. My audience grew, expanded, thanks to TWT.
- To read with feedback in mind. I have learned the value of not only listening to others writing but reading others writing and giving feedback. Thoughtfully reading and writing back to another.
- To embrace feedback. I have learned the power of feedback from others. I think every participant in the FB Live experience lauded the feedback. For some, including me, it is what fuels us to not only write, but to keep living like a writer.
- To be open to inspiration. Inspiration comes in every Tuesday (every day in the month of March!). It comes in the form of story, poem, pictures, sketches. It comes from people near and far.
- Connect. The connections that are made as a result reading and sharing are real. The stories we share help us know each other and respect our differences and our similarities.
- Hold on to beliefs and live them. This community reminds me every day of my belief that there is no right and wrong when it comes to writing and living like a writer for children is priceless.
Thank you to every member of the TWT community for maintaining and contributing a space for me to continue to live and grow.
PS Turns it wasn’t me but my air pods — they needed a reset by the almost invisible button on the back — who knew??!!