Any kindergarten teacher worth their weight knows this. Moving between one activity and another, one time and another, takes time in and of itself.
That in-between time is called: transition.
Transition trips people up. Even this once kindergarten teacher who knows in her bones how vitally important it is to navigate transitions mindfully.
As I write this, it’s Tuesday. It’s snowing/raining/freezing/gross here in NY. Again. I lost yesterday to digging out our Excursion so I’d have a vehicle to get around in. I lost the weekend to the kids and familial activities. I lost the Thursday before that to (you guessed it) more weather.
And the ghost of guilt is hovering around, reminding me somewhat cruelly that if I had kept working I wouldn’t be struggling with this transition. I feel a push in me to rush through feelings the guilt and the discomfort. I want to jump right back in already, and BE there.
Here’s the thing: you cannot rush through transition.
Any teacher can tell you that chaos will ensue when you try to rush kids into changing gears. Building in time for transition is one of the best ways to make a classroom - and life – run more smoothly.
Ritual is about transition. Rituals carry us from one state of being, through the transition, to another, more-desired state of being. What I need isn't to rush. What I need is a ritual, a time in-between time, to ease me from not working back to working!
So…it's time for a deep breath. It's time to light a candle. I’ll gather up my writing materials – all my countless pages scattered here and there across the coffee table, the kitchen counter, the desk in my office. I’ll carve out a time to be with them. I’ll make sure that that time doesn’t involve the expectation of doing, only the intention of BEing with it. And hopefully, within that carved out time I can gently move into work again.