Today the journal prompt for my English 9 students was an Albert Einstein quote: "In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." Between struggling with infertility to frustrations in my job---I'm learning a lot about finding opportunity amidst difficulty lately. To be honest, when we first struggled with having biological children I couldn't see opportunity in that difficulty. I had a one track mind and was devastated that we might not ever get that opportunity. Earlier this year when troubles struck at work, I'd grow so angry that I could barely do my job. I didn't look for opportunity. Instead, I focused on how pissed I was.
Today was a rough day. We had a pretty heated staff meeting at work, physically I haven't been feeling well, and I've been dwelling a lot on growing our family. When I found myself feeling like I was going to blow my top, I walked into my classroom, shut the door behind me, took a deep breath and began organizing papers (normally I run when I'm frustrated, but because I was in work attire all I could do was clean!). Eventually I looked up and saw the Einstein quote on my board. It started to put things into perspective. I went on a run when I got home to clear my head and began thinking of all the opportunities I have in my life right now: because we can't conceive our own children--we get to adopt a child; my job seems like a really stressful place right now--so I have the opportunity to be that joy and light that my students and co-workers need. I've identified the opportunities; now the hard part is actually doing something about it--taking that step to act on these opportunities. It won't be easy, but I think it's worth it.