About the Care and Feeding of Dreams

There are days I wonder what on earth I'm doing. Here in my office at home during the summer while my friends are at the beach and on cruises. Haven't had time to balance my bank account or even open the mail. Writing. Checking. Making sure I'm consistent. Jumping in Blackboard Collaborate with Julie Lindsay in China at the wee ends of both of our days – later or early, that is about it.

Trying to put into paper the pattern for how one can collaborate globally with excellence while improving learning in the classroom. Just how one can make projects like Flat Classroom massively scalable.

But I don't feel preachy right now. I don't really feel anything but tired and Coked Up – Diet Coke that is my friends, lest you unsubscribe in a huff.

This is the lonely side of writing. I got my daughter today to help me take all of the notes from reviewers and cut them apart and bind them together using the circa planner. That was good.

Then I spilled Diet Coke all over my comfy bicycle pants with the pink stripe and manuscript covered in pink highlighter. Not so good.

So, I called my husband knowing he would tell me just what I needed to hear.

“You're making progress, Vicki. Just keep going and you will finish.”

Then, I walked back to my bedroom and put my head into my pillow and let a tear slide down my unmade up cheek. My youngest son got to me and looked at me holding my face in his chubby ten year old hands,

 “God will let you finish. You are making progress, Mommy, just don't quit.”

Don't quit, Mommy.

So, I'm writing this post to share with you no epic educational theory. Only words from the trenches. When you're doing something worth doing it is hard. There is no romantic hero waiting in the wings to sweep you away and take you to Italy away from the struggle and exhaustion. But there are encouragers and if you've got them, hold them close. 

Watering the FlowersDon't quit, my friends. If you plant the seed of a dream and water it with your tears and tend it with your time you will eventually reap a harvest that is due you.

The only way you can lose your dream is if you abandon it to the parching sun of a careless world and refuse to water it with your tears and tend it with your time.

Dreams die not for earnest yearning but for lack of the midnight candle burning.

Great dreams require great sacrifice. If you look at the person in the front of the room of thousands looking to be speaking and having the time of his or her life know that most likely their dream began in their office amidst sweat and tears.

No matter what becomes of this writing career dream I've had since I was twelve, you, I, and my children can look back on this post and know that the path was not easy.

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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Carnett June 3, 2011 - 2:07 pm

Close your eyes and think of the world traveling you have done in the past year. You have been places many of those on the beach or cruises will never go.  There are many valuable experiences in life that are only appreciated by those who live them. One of my least favorite comments from others is: Get a life… Life is personal and to each his own dreams. Keep going!

Faith@ahead June 3, 2011 - 3:22 pm

Inspiring! Such an inspiring post… “When you’re doing something worth doing it is hard.” I love this line. Thanks for this, now I’m looking forward to starting my thesis this coming semester. Thanks a lot. And lots of power and luck on your writing dream! :) 

Lorri Lores June 3, 2011 - 6:53 pm

Hi Vicki,

I recently found your blog and really appreciate all you’re doing.

Take your son’s advice. You’re working on such a remarkable project- “Don’t give up.”  It’s worth every sob, hair pull, and rant. You’re lucky to have such a great support system.

coolcatteacher June 3, 2011 - 11:26 pm

Thank you for the kindness! I’m having another day of agony here. Missing my family – they’re in the den, I’m in the office. Thanks.

coolcatteacher June 3, 2011 - 11:28 pm

Oh, you’ll get to feel it on your thesis, I’m sure! It is very hard as I sit here and write all day — again. Thank you so much for commenting!

coolcatteacher June 3, 2011 - 11:31 pm

Thank you so much. You are so right, Carnett – this is EXACTLY what I needed to hear. I just had a call from someone a moment a go who wanted me to go over to the school to do something. It was hard to explain that I’m in my same lucky mickey mouse flannel pants that I wore yesterday and that I have a deadline. I say deadline and they say “what?” I tis like a different world. Thank you, Carnett, for taking time to help me through this day. I don’t know if you and all of those who commented on this blog today know that it is like nourishment to my soul when commenters say something on my blog. Blogs are really a 2 way conversation.

Bteressa June 4, 2011 - 12:43 am

I know how you feel Vicki. Sometimes I feel like things are going too fast and I feel rushed. I just want to cry. My husband like your son tells me I will get it all done. Taking these doctoral classes all three are going to be challenging to get it all in. I love this technology class however. I have purchased alot of technology items for our pre K classes. I think it is really important when I see all that you are doing in your classroom. The sooner the better. They will be blogging and avataring soon.

Heather June 4, 2011 - 1:45 am

Vicki, As much as I enjoy when you share your planning and learning I really love these posts that you write now and then. It helps me realize that we are all on the journey together even though we are apart.  While I don’t have children to encourage me like your special ones, you are in fact one of the few in my life who keeps be going and helps me not quit. So keep going – what you are doing is amazing and the book is going to be INCREDIBLE.

My favourite verse is: “Be still and know……”


@mjohnson316 June 4, 2011 - 7:08 pm

Loved reading this and it is appropriately labeled “inspiration.”  When your writing is also a labor of love, it can still be a struggle and it often seems that people – family and friends – and other parts of your life are carrying on without you; that you’re missing out or they’re missing out.  I could have written your post when I was writing my dissertation – which I loved doing.  It did get done – four years ago and it’s online as a pdf http://www.palos118.org/curriculum/study/  Carry on!

coolcatteacher June 4, 2011 - 11:20 pm

Thank you for sharing! So glad to know that others feel the same way!

coolcatteacher June 5, 2011 - 2:28 pm

Yes, Heather! It means a lot to know that someone out there benefits even in the struggle. This is my week to be still. I will be off the grid and try to rest some this week.

Vicki Davis
Sent from my iPad

Lmerrrittcarter June 5, 2011 - 4:43 pm

I spent the better part of three years of weekends, late nights, and vacation time co-writing two books.  I think I saw more of my writing partner via GoogleVideo than my family at times.  They are finally published.  Will they make a difference?  I hope so.  Sometimes I reflect on what I lost: time with my family, the ability to travel, visit friends, and exercise (I gained nearly 15 lbs.)  But, when I ask myself if I wish I had not attempted to contribute to the betterment of education….I say, “of course not”!  I had a dream!  Working toward improving something for others….is the definition of selfless…and professional…create a life that has meaning!  Keep going!!  http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1598845810/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_1?pf_rd_p=486539851&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-1&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=1598845837&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=1CSXJ27P6WJW2ERG1WC9

. mrsdurff June 5, 2011 - 10:17 pm

Nothing worth doing is ever easy for any of us! Now let me ask you, how do you think I feel at the bottom of my days trying to earn this crazy pipedream of a degree, helping to support a family, and just let go from a job?  If I can keep on keeping on, then you can too!

Educational Pro June 6, 2011 - 7:39 pm

Vicki – I’ve been reading your blog for awhile now but haven’t commented. This post jumped out at me so I figured it was time to throw in my two cents. You’ve hit upon two two great driving forces here. Yes, dreams are of the utmost importance, but everything is made so much easier with the support of loved ones. Dreams + Support = huge advantage towards success. Please keep writing!


coolcatteacher June 6, 2011 - 7:55 pm

Thank you for sharing your story. From what I’ve heard- most books are just labors of love anyway! Thanks for sharing!

Vicki Davis
Sent from my iPad

coolcatteacher June 6, 2011 - 7:56 pm

You better keep going! You encourage so many of us! So many struggles are this way. I think there is value in sharing that it isn’t all easy.

Vicki Davis
Sent from my iPad

coolcatteacher June 6, 2011 - 7:59 pm

Yes! Great formula! For me I would have to add another piece. Dreams+ support + God’s calling = blessings – whether or not it is success as the world defines it. Thank you for jumping in from “beyond the blackboard!” :-)

Vicki Davis
Sent from my iPad

coolcatteacher June 7, 2011 - 1:47 pm

Great! Remember that young children may do better with voicethread and things not requiring writing. This is wonderful! So glad you are integrating and doing all you can do!

Teacher Tammy June 8, 2011 - 3:14 pm

Great blog post. You know that you have done or are doing a great job when your child provides you with wisdom and words of encouragement. Run your race and enjoy the journey. It is important to remember that we are human and that “Rome was not built in a day…”

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