Be Careful What You Wish For

LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 20: Musician Chris Daug...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
“We'll help you maximize your blog's reach.”

“We want to exchange links with you.”
“Here's an announcement you'll want to cover on your blog.”
“We've got a new infographic we'd like you to share on your blog.”
“I'd like to write a guest post on your blog.”

“I emailed you last week. When are you going to write about my…”

Over 5,000 messages and counting have accumulated since I last hit inbox zero the first week of October.

Meeting Chris Daughtry: Be Careful What you Wish For
As I was coming back from South Africa ready to board the plane from Johannesburg to Atlanta, GA I went wide eyed with surprise.  Chris Daughtry, the last person my husband and I had voted for on American Idol (Kip stopped watching after Chris got voted off as he said America didn't know talent – what can I say – Kip has the remote most nights.)

Well, Chris Daughtry and his band were getting ready to get on the plane. I couldn't help it – my daughter loves him (OK, my daughter's Mom does too) and I asked him for an autograph and photo. I got the autograph of my boarding pass, but he said,

“Mam, I don't really do photos in airports, for obvious reasons.”

I saw in his eyes kindness, but perhaps a hint of tiredness and perhaps just wanting to be alone for a while – it must get overwhelming! His band sort of closed in a nice little hedge around their leader eyeballing me to see if I'd be a stalker. I'm not and just went back to hanging out and trying to stay awake.

So, I obliged.  But then, I got on the plane and settled down for my routine – which is I listen to, of all people's Daughtry's song “Home”  and some lines struck me.

“Be careful what you wish for because
you might just get it all
you might just get it all
and then some you don't want.”

Well, Chris, here's to you, buddy. You're right.  Perhaps you don't want 40 something year old teachers trying to get your photos in airports.

But , neither do I want 5,000 email messages awaiting me when I come home either!

Be Careful What You Wish For
I'm so glad and overjoyed to have a blog that people read.  I hope that they have stayed subscribed even with this week of hiatus I gave myself.

I had to take a break from blogging for my own sanity. For myself.  

It is so easy to forget who I really am and what I'm doing here.

I was soooo excited to go to South Africa and still have quite a few videos that I plan to share with you, but right now I have a book deadline on December 1st!

Additionally, I had a leading blogger make some hurtful comments about me going to South Africa on another edublogger's blog (sort of behind my back if you ask me) and really, it bothered me. It took my giddy excitement and perhaps naivety on being allowed to be part of the “press” of the Microsoft Innovative Educators Conference and just popped that good old balloon!

Who do I think I am anyway?

Well, I am someone different from who I was in December 2005 when I started blogging. Blogging definitely changes you – it just does – no matter what the outcome or where you go with it it does change you.  

I hired someone to help me with my email back in August and the person quit after three days “because you get too much email and it stresses me out.”  Well, goodness knows – it stresses me out too – that is why I was trying to get a virtual assistant!  But, then again, sorting through my email is not really anyone's cup of tea.  It is barely mine…

Be careful what you wish for.

So, this is just sort of a reflection of sorts. Maybe just blogging about whatever I want to blog about is just me saying — “Hey there world, this is still my blog.”

Maybe it is just saying “OK folks, lots of great stuff out there but I'm not going to let the guilt of not having read your email  yet or review your book or responding to your question make me feel so guilty that I continue to hide by not blogging.”

Some of you who read my blog have emailed me — don't let this discourage you – I do always want to hear from REAL people – real people doing really cool things out there. If you're a classroom teacher, principal or work in a school of any kind or a college professor or preservice teacher – always know that I welcome you to contact me.

If you're a bot or a spammer or could care less about students or education or me for that matter then don't waste your time or mine.

Right now, I'm just wishing for a really good spam catcher but maybe it is time to go the virtual assistant route again.

And if, by some chance, you're waiting on my response to an email – I am working to get through them. I'm sorry for being behind.
The Charmed Life?
I'm beginning to find that truly no one on this planet lives a “charmed life” and that no matter your role on this big beautiful earth that there are pro's and con's to each role you could play.
It is really a matter of being content where we are — stretching for and reaching for goals but to never ever think that we are in pursuit of some utopia. Utopias aren't really for us this side of heaven, I think.
Realize that you can WISH for lots of hits and lots of readers but that sometimes it may have implications that you're not aware of and this is coming from a very small fish in a very very large pond!

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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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Shlomo November 17, 2010 - 5:25 am

At the risk of adding to your pressure, let me say that I always enjoy seeing your blog and have gleaned some real gems from it.

Richardbyrne November 17, 2010 - 12:46 pm

Hi Vicki,

Congratulations on what seems to be a great experience in South Africa. I’ll admit, I’m a bit jealous.

While it is a bit of balloon burst to have people say negative things about you (I recently had a similar incident) just remember that there are far far more people who appreciate and support what you do than there are negative people. That’s what I tell myself so that I can sleep at night after a negative experience.

Keep up the great work.


coolcatteacher November 17, 2010 - 3:55 pm

Thank you, Richard. You are so right! I guess I was so giddy about being asked to go that when someone said “do you honestly think you’re a journalist” – I took it as so condescending that it upset me. I don’t think I’m anything but who I am, but as my Dad says – the best argument to those who are hurtful is to continue to be excellent in what I do! Thank you for being so kind.

studentaccuk November 18, 2010 - 5:44 am

Hey..Vicki..I am waiting for your book …hope just like your blogs it was also fantastic….Will you provide me the review of that book….
Student Accommodation

Toni Olivieri-Barton November 20, 2010 - 5:08 am

Vicki- You seem like a big fish in a large pond. Hang in there. You are an amazing person to work with. Anyone reading your ideas is lucky to have access to them. You are an inspiration to me and many others.

coolcatteacher November 20, 2010 - 2:35 pm

Thank you so much, Toni. You are such an encouragement to me on the Flat Classroom projects and are going to make an excellent “veteran teacher.”

Sue Waters November 21, 2010 - 1:16 pm

Hi Vicki,

Richard’s totally correct. “There are far far more people who appreciate and support what you do than there are negative people”. You had every right to feel excited about anything and everything you achieve because you work hard and have helped so many.

“but that sometimes it may have implications that you’re not aware of” — totally and sometimes when it feels like everyone is constantly asking for help or something (which they are) it can feel too much — and then you remember you’re doing it for a reason and it does make a difference. And the World is all good again.

And the emails — yeah :( Virtual assistant is a good idea as I know how long it takes me to deal with x number of emails a day. Having someone filter them so you can focus on the important ones will definitely help.

And keep up the great work!


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