I have been nicknamed Switzerland. It stemmed from a conversation among friends. We were a group that formed as a result of a shared hell; we all belonged to the same killer exercise class at our gym. Our instructor would joined us and we did always have a lot of fun. But back to Switzerland. The conversations would often go like this.
“Well, I don’t think he knows what he’s doing. The gym shouldn’t…” or
“You know what I heard, I heard that she is going to move the time of her class. That’s wrong because…” or
“My friend just told me that her niece is going to change everything. I told her she should not give in…”
You get the idea. It’s human nature, we don’t like the way something sounds and we have an opinion. A strong opinion. And we voice it. The problem is that we don’t voice it to the person who needs to know. We just voice it. So we get aggravated, we (probably) involve others who don’t need to be involved, and we don’t solve anything. So along would come Switzerland.
“Did you ever think that the reason she said that might be…” or
“Maybe you need to give him some time, there could be other things going on that you aren’t aware of…” or
“Have you checked to see if anyone else has a hand in this? Maybe it isn’t actually coming from them…”
So what I’m trying to say here is that I always find myself in the role of the Peacemaker. The calm guru. The “smile more, say less, it will be fine” member of the group. I drive people crazy.
Today, I’m bringing Switzerland out again. Especially because I feel like I am surrounded by Switzerland types. From all of the slices I have been reading since the Corona Crazies have begun, I can tell that there is a lot of proactive, calm, and “let’s make sense of this” thinking and talking going on.
This brings me to why I’m grateful:
- I’m grateful for technology. Without it this job would be nearly impossible. I can teach from home, I can stay abreast of ongoing developments, I can stay in touch with all those who I need to stay in touch with.
- I’m grateful for good decisions. My district administrators are providing just the right amount of guidance and leaving it up to us to provide just the right amount of personal touch to make this work.
- I’m grateful for decisions the state I live in (NJ) is making. It is ongoing and changing constantly but I have to say I understand why these decisions are being made.
- I’m grateful for the governors of all our states for communicating with each other and coming up with solid plans.
- I’m grateful for the Health officials who are figuring things and keeping us filled in.
My list could go on and on but you get my point. Every decision isn’t the perfect decision. I can’t say that every decision is even the right one, but I’m grateful for leadership and tools. We will make it through this, and the Switzerland in me listens, thinks, ponders, and agrees to go along. The only other option is to fight and that is definitely not my nature!
Good luck, stay well, keep in touch with the world.
And I forgot, I am so so so grateful for TWT and this writing challenge. I feel connected to an important group of people here. I know we are making a difference.