This morning, as I shoveled the vast quantities of snow that fell last evening and overnight, I could not help but think about TMC. I tweeted this out as it seemed like where we are.
The storm has passed but there is a mess left behind. We can see where we’ve come from and there’s a path ahead yet to be forged.
I shoveled the snow, at times light and easy to move, other times hard and so icy that I was forced to work at it at an angle, not head on, for an hour and a half. When I came in my phone showed that I had been active for 7 minutes. This too reminds me of where we are with TMC. I feel like many have been drawn to the issues of the past week, but cannot see all the work that has been done to bring us to this point. I want to tell my phone that no, it wasn’t just 7 minutes. It was over 90 minutes. You can see that my shirt is soaked through and my cheeks are all rosy. But it feels like I’m making excuses. It feels like if I want to tell everyone what a profound effect TMC has had on so many educators, it will be seen as making excuses. I want everyone to thank those who have helped create and sustain TMC thus far, but do not want to be seen as going against those who have felt left out. I want to say that no one on team TMC ever wanted anyone to feel excluded, and that we are all in different places on our journey towards equity. It hurts me to know that some are being vilified because hurting more people doesn’t solve the problem. I am starting to understand white fragility but I think that 7 years of work making something remarkable and special should not be so easily dismissed. Team TMC has been fractured and dysfunctional for a while now and we each need to own our part in that. I should have done more. I am quiet by nature and tend to be happier helping in the background, but I should have tried harder and made time. I think we would all do things differently if we could go back, but we can’t so we must try to move forward. Publicly acknowledging your failures is hard, especially at a time when emotions are running high and responses are quick and harsh. I am flawed but I continue to try to be a better person. To learn from others who know more. To listen and to make meaning of what is being said so that I can do better the next time.
As I head back out into the snow, I can see my tracks. I see where I did a good job and where I should have tried harder. Ahead there is only fresh snow, and new paths waiting to be created.