On Hating the Process

When I was in Kindergarten, and it was time to learn to write our names (day 1 pretty much), mine looked something like this…


Except for much sloppier.

(Yea there was some “I’m a lefty so I write from right to left” nonsense going on.)

I wasn’t so much concerned with writing in the right direction as I was making my name look like the teacher’s. It was written in that pristine “my handwriting is perfect because I’m teaching letters to Kindergarteners” kind of way right there on the board.

You know the handwriting. My mom has it, Mrs. Nan has it, they all have it.

My kindergarten teacher had it. And it just sat there mocking me as I pursed my lips, squinted my eyes, and subsequently scribbled my name in the wrong direction every single time.

Oh how I lamented.

“Mommy, why did you give me SUCH A LONG NAME???!!!!”

“Wahhhhhh, why can’t I write like the teacher, Mommy???”

Erase. Erase. Erase. Erase. Hole in the paper. Rip the rest of the paper in frustration. Cry a little (maybe a lot). Start wishing my name was something shorter like ‘Kimberly’ after the Pink PowerRanger.

(Yea I couldn’t count either…seeing as Kimberly is only 1 letter shorter than Mary Emily)

My mom must’ve known then that I would always hate the process. The process of starting something knew, floundering about, erasing holes in the paper and such.

She reminded me of this story the other day…as I am once again hating the process. I am once again floundering about, erase…erase….erasing plans in my lesson planning notebook, super unsure, and wishing I could do it like the other teachers.

I hate the process.

But eventually I learned to write my name. And now I write it on the whiteboard…pretty pristine if I do say so myself.

A process is just that, a process. (“A series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end.”) A process always ends, and when it does, you’re no longer floundering about or wishing your name was Kimberly.

When it ends, you’re writing your name from left to right like nobody’s business.

When it ends, you’ll be able to write your lesson plans in pen.

Here’s to trying not to hate the process.


Mel (a.k.a. A Spanish teacher that does a lot of erasing)




6 thoughts on “On Hating the Process

  1. Clearly, another reason why you embraced “Mel” so quickly. You were dreaming of a shorter name and you received it in the 4th grade! Be careful what you wish for – I still have trouble not picturing the fat, bald headed cook from the sitcom “Alice”. Oh the process, one day, maybe you will be Mel to me, but for now I will trust the process and stick with “MaryEm” – I love you- Dad

  2. After all these years of teaching, I would never write my lesson plans in pen…walking on dangerous ground there!!! Glad you are still at it…everything will fall into place…it always does!

  3. Oh M’Em….I love this. Somehow I had missed this one!! How could I? Oh yes, I know now! I was in the “process” of hanging on to my “worry” of becoming a Kindergarten teacher again! WAH, not because I don’t love the babies anymore, just because I have the 2nd grade “process” down pat now and did not want to start the new K curriculum “process” again. Too old? no, just love where I am right now 🙂 I completely understand and relate to your story. AND the funny thing is; it all is a process…….we do eventually get there (you know, where it is meant for us to be) Great seeing you M’Em, Mary Em, Mary Emily on Wednesday…..like your Dad, IDK, maybe one day you might become “MEL” to us (us being the ones who loved you so when you were just Mary Emily), haha! love you to the moon and back and then some baby girl!!!!

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