Life Lessons: Educator’s Edition…

Batise Braxton

Welcome to a special edition of Good Enough Mother Life Lessons! With school right around the corner, we thought it would be great to devote some time and space to the people who are so good to our kids.. educators! Hope you enjoy these special Life Lessons and happy school year to teacher, students AND their parents!

Are you happy at the moment?

I am happy overall. I love my home life and I have activities I do to release stress.

If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?

I would tell the teen me that she should not be so hard on herself. I think some of us are our own worst critics and we sometimes beat ourselves up about minor things.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?

It is better to express yourself honestly it causes less headaches. I think sometimes I tried with people I knew were “toxic” but I didn’t want to seem impolite but it made me feel drained. I need to consider my feelings as well.

What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?

I want to get more organized at home and at work. I always intend to and I start and then I get focused on something else like projects for the kids or something.

What’s your secret to happiness?

My secret to happiness is: don’t put off things until… We always say oh I will travel when I am such and such age or I am going to do this for myself when the kids graduate. My mom passed when she was 51 and to me that is young. She traveled and enjoyed friends. I felt like she had fun with life.

What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?

It may seem odd but when I feel things are getting hectic and chaotic I take a vow of silence. I just shut up unless it is necessary (like for work) and take a break. I find that I get my thoughts in order and I get a chance away from other people’s drama as well. I get to read more, watch shows and avoid gossip. It’s like a cleansing breath. A few days or a week of quiet and I love it. It soothes the introvert part of me. I also like painting my nails every Sunday. It’s fun and inexpensive.

What’s your biggest regret?

I actually don’t have one…yet..hopefully ever. I think all things are life lessons. Things don’t always turn out as we planned but I feel like I learn something from these moments and they shape who we are.

What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?

Believe in yourself. My students will say “I can’t do it.” They get to feeling like they won’t ever learn certain things. As a Special Education teacher I feel so happy when I see my kids excited that they learned something or got a good grade. The other layer to that is when the parents thank me for my hard work. It makes me blush.

What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?

Okay…I will create a nice bulletin board project, book reports or some type of activity and say ooh I need to document this and take pictures but I don’t always do it.

Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?

I am a person people can count on. When things are hard for people and they need help I am there. When my mom was sick and she was on hospice I really was happy to go there every day after work and on weekends. I surprised myself with nursing and clean up. My friend was having surgery and I stayed in the hospital overnight with her…majorly hard for me. She was scared so I wanted to be with her. A few years back a friend lost his daughter, in the hospital his mother asked for help washing her and I volunteered. It was important for her to do and I wanted to help her. If I can be of service I like to help.

When were you happiest?

In adulthood, one thing that really makes me smile is when we took a family trip. My son and stepdaughter graduated high school and my stepson graduated 8 road trip. We drove to the state my sister lives in.  We ate, shopped, laughed and enjoyed each others company. I really thought it was special and fun. I think that everyone really enjoyed themselves.

What ten words best describe you?

Friendly. Creative. Honest. Polite. Nerdy. Generous. Funny. Compassionate. Helpful. Inquisitive.

What’s the biggest way parents can help you in the coming year?

The biggest way parents can help me is be open to communicating with me. I view us as a team.

My name is Batise Braxton, I am from Philadelphia, where I still live. I am going into my tenth year of teaching. I went to Girard College from 2nd to 12th grade and then went to Temple University. I am married. I am a mother, stepmother and recent grandmother. Come check out NatReview for great stories about Natural Hair, Natural Living.