January 26, 2016

Confessions of a Middle School Counselor

When I hear the word confession I immediately think: secret and juicy. Ugh stop it, I know. I've watched too many episodes of every reality TV show that has a confessional booth. It's either that or I immediately want to start singing these are my confessions..........and that wouldn't be pretty.

Lucky you, I'll spare you the song and get straight to the juicy part.

Take a minute to think back to your school counselor growing up. Yeah, knock the cobwebs off that memory. I can pretty much picture several and could probably say hi to them by name if I were to see them at the store.....what can I say, teenaging was hard for me. Anyways, I'm sure you can think of at least one. Now think of some stuff you remember about them.

I remember very clearly one of my counselors growing up was smiley, kind, warm-hearted, very patient, etc. I could go on and on. The point is that a lot of times when I have conversations with people about school counselors they say similar types of things. Being a school counselor is kind of a type, like a specific mentality. School counselors seem to sense things that others can't. They can lift a ton of bricks, so to speak, off a child's chest in a matter of moments. Okay, keep all those warm, fuzzy, positive things in mind.

Because now I confess....

I dislike the face poster. (Trying to not be super dramatic and say hate.) But really. It's a poster with a cartoon drawn on it in a bunch of different facial expressions. As a child I thought it was cool, and I have to give a double confession on this one-I think I had my very own one at one time. However, as an adult I worry. What if someone's face really does make one of these expressions? Wouldn't that be real problem?

There has been more than one occasion that I've wanted to adopt a student and raise them as my own. Working this closely with kids is very rewarding, but it can also be very hard. Hearing firsthand what some students go through outside of school breaks my heart. Imagine watching the end of Marley and Me over and over and over..... okay so it's not that sad ALL the time. But sometimes it is. Just remember- counselors get the feels too sometimes.

I almost walked in on a student in the restroom. If this isn't embarrassing enough, let me add that it was also one of my co-workers children. To make a long story short, said student was using the restroom with the door unlocked and did not acknowledge my knock on the door. Therefore, I opened the door. Thank the Lord in the Heavens above that I did not see anything but a shocked facial expression because I screamed and slammed the door shut faster than I think I've ever moved in my life. Completely terrifying.
My face.
I could double as my school's interior designer. Who knew being on ladders, drawing murals, painting on walls, and some random Tim Taylor circa 1995 Home Improvement type stuff would be part of my job as a school counselor? It's not, but my boss is awesome and gives me a lot of flexibility in creating an awesome leadership environment in our school. Current project: ceiling tiles.


And lastly for today,
I may or may not have called a student an "F-head". Read that like it's written. The actual "F" word was not said. Let me fill you in. My co-counselor and I jokingly told some kids to quit being "trouble-heads" when they got in trouble. Fast forward to an academic review with a student. The student has several failing grades and.....out comes "you've got some work to do, F-head." Bone.Head. It made sense in my mind.

Sorry I've been M.I.A. lately, I feel like I've been living in the death pit of germs around here getting sick and trying to heal my pirate eye. But don't worry, I think I might actually be on the mend now.
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January 17, 2016

Dear Clumsy Girl, You are not alone.

Hey you with the injury,

Yes you. You know who you are.

You're the girl with the random, inexplicable, oddly shaped bruises. The one that's asked constantly how she got hurt, but isn't always sure. If you aren't her, you know of her. The girl who can trip up the stairs or even over that huge pile of thin air.

Don't worry clumsy girl, I'm here to let you know something really special: YOU AREN'T ALONE.
Wanna know how I know?

Because I am you. I'm not just a self-proclaimed clumsy girl anymore either, I've now gathered quite the following of people who find my clumsiness entertaining. Oh, you want to hear my laundry list of harmful or potentially harmful incidents? Ok fine, if you're going to beg I'll share.

Starting as far back as I can remember, I:

choked on a piece of candy (that I found behind the couch).
busted my head open from running through a linoleum kitchen with socks on (still have the scar on my eyebrow to prove it).
flew over the handle bars on my bike and basically kissed the pavement with my whole face (doctor wasn't sure if my two front teeth would grow in correctly after that one; luckily they did.
broke my wrist from a roller skating incident.
broke my big toe from stubbing it on the living room carpet.
broke my finger from diving back into 1st base while playing softball.
got 5 stitches from cutting my finger while opening a can of cat food.
obtained another broken finger from slamming the deep freezer door on it (My dad might have helped with this one.)

If I actually sat down to think this through I truly believe I could go on for quite a while. Instead I'll fast forward to my most recent unintentional injury. I grabbed a school promotional pamphlet off a co-workers desk and somehow it flew up and cut my eye. I can't make this up. The pamphlet basically attacked me. I had to go to the eye doctor, who asked if I cut my eye with a big piece of cardboard because that's how bad the cut was. No sir, I did not cut it with cardboard. I just happen to be really good at injuring myself with minimal assistance from outside objects.

You're probably wondering what my point of all of this is? It's not just to put myself on blast with all my ridiculous situations. It's to give a very special shoutout to all the other clumsy girls out there. I feel your pain and I know the struggle is very real! Don't get down on yourself clumsy girl, there are tons of us out there who can relate. My advice? I know you didn't ask for it; but embrace who you are, clumsiness and all. And when people say "you are special" consider it a compliment, because you are.

The universe needs people like you.
Saw this shared on Insta and had to share.
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