Life Lessons: Educator’s Edition…
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?
If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?
I would tell myself to enjoy high school and live each day to the fullest. Respect yourself and require everyone to respect you as well. Life is full of disappointments. Learn to receive disappointment as you receive accolades.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?
I have learned what I’ve always known.. “Through Christ Jesus all things are possible”.
What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?
This is a challenge, because I’m always thinking of my kids. I’m completing my doctorate, so I want to sustain my GPA in coursework and begin dissertation writing this time next year.
What’s your secret to happiness?
Begin with the end in mind. I constantly set goals and review them periodically. Sometimes it requires that I make changes in my actions and life; but this process provides accountability and the discipline needed to accomplish my goals. My secret to happiness is a quote from Shakespeare….“ to thine own self be true”… This means I must take the time to “check in”. When I check in, I’m checking on my emotional and spiritual self. This is done during my alone time. Usually, 4:00am in the morning, I enjoy about 30 minutes of quiet time. I’m praying, humming a favorite song, reading scripture, etc.. There isn’t a script, but I take the time to listen to my heart and body. I find I weep more as I grow older (or more mature in my relationship with God). This alone time is paramount to my emotional well being.
What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?
As shared, my personal meditation time keeps me grounded. Also, I have a “team”. I have a support system of women, men, family, mentors, colleagues, friends, etc… I can reach out to these individuals at any time. During stressful times, I can call on these individuals. They provide feedback (sometimes corrective I must admit) and confirmation as needed. It’s helpful to be in good counsel and my “team” has my back.
What’s your biggest regret?
I wish I could have made a few different decisions, but I know I may not have learned the intended lesson. I don’t have any regrets.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?
The most important lesson I’ve taught my kids is to pray. We pray together every day and it makes my day when I hear their prayers. This is a tradition we began since they were born. It allows me to know what’s going on, how they are feeling, what concerns they have, and reports of praise. To witness their spiritual growth first hand has been amazing.
What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?
Procrastination. It is my weakness. With all of my responsibilities, I tend to procrastinate. Sometimes, I’m left with a finite amount of time and that interferes with the quality of my work.
Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?
I am proud of the legacy I’m building and creating daily. I’ve been blessed to be in a profession that I can literally change lives. This is a gift in which I’m very serious and committed. More and more, I am extremely intentional in projects, activities, development of people, etc.. Changing generations is what I do!
When were you happiest?
I am happiest when my kids are happy and when I’m making memories. Playing with my kids, telling jokes, watching movies, taking trips, going to church, erc… I’m happy spending time friends as well. Every now and then, we get together and just have a blast!!
What ten words best describe you?
Knowledgeable. Committed. Professional. Fun. Kid-focused. Engaging. Sincere. Civic-minded. Loving. Friendly.
What’s the biggest way parents can help you in the coming year?
Parents can help by collaborating with the schools. This collaboration includes volunteering, chaperoning field trips, reading to students, mentoring, assisting in fund raising, and becoming school advocates.
Levatta L. Levels is Assistant Superintendent of Student Support Services for DeSoto Independent School District. She has worked in public schools for over twenty five years. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.