Attending Meetings Where I Don’t Feel Welcome

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10

Stressor

Have you ever attended a meeting that you know you don’t fit in well with the others? That was my day today and I have five more just like it before the school year begins.

Background

Three years ago, Don and I moved to Texas. Shortly after we arrived, I started a job as a 4th grade teacher. Compared to being a special education teacher, I really enjoyed it. I would spend late nights at school to get everything ready for the next day/week.

At the end of the year, the principal asked me (volun-told me) to take a job as a Skills II teacher. A Skills II teacher is exposed to daily chances of getting injured by behaviorally aggressive students. I reluctantly agreed.

Within the first month, I was injured three times on my left wrist and hand. By mid-October, Don was driving me to the ER thinking I was having a heart attack. It was discovered that I was having a major panic attack.  Even with IV medication, the doctors could not get my blood pressure below 167/120.

Changes

Though I felt led by God to work with students with special needs in the public schools, God made it loud a clear that His plan was continuing in a new direction. By November of that school year, I had resigned and was given the opportunity to start teaching at a Christian school.

Unfortunately, I had to give up the public school paycheck and all benefits. But my joy came from the middle school students that I was able to work with. Plus I could now talk about Jesus, teach the truths from the Bible, and pray with my students.

A Benefit

In April, the staff was notified of professional development seminars that we could attend presented by the public school system. Being a learning-nerd, I jumped at the chance and signed up for 6 different seminars.

Anxiety develops

Last night I didn’t sleep well because of the anxiety that started to creep up. My brain keep thinking about who I may see at the seminar; the looks I might get for being “an outsider”.

Today during the seminar, the presenter did a great job introducing books,  and describing and demonstrating many apps that could be used with my students. When I opened my laptop, I realized that I could not access those apps because I did not have a district-issued computer.

Also, I couldn’t use my computer because I didn’t have the password for the secured WiFi signal. I felt trapped. I didn’t fit in.

Suddenly, I stopped and prayed asking for God to help me appreciate the learning He provided, and how to use what was presented with what He provides to the Christian school.

As a result, I noticed my wrist (the injured one, which is still far from healed,) where I have one of my life verses tattooed – “Be Still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10.

I don’t need to fit in with the world, but I need to keep my focus and sense of belonging on God.

Have a blessed evening,

Heidi D

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