As we head into the last few months of the school year, I am reflecting on how messy education can be. From staff changes throughout the year, families moving in (or out); holidays or assemblies interrupting the flow of a unit, I’m often feeling as though things are messy, and a little chaotic. 

I’m reminded of the fairy lights: 

I had this really long string of fairy lights at my trailer that I took down and brought home to repurpose. As careful as I was removing them and transporting them, they inevitably, quickly became a big tangled mess. As I turned them on to ensure they still worked, I contemplated throwing the tangled bunch into a vase or clear glass bowl. 

Tangled Beauty

But I could use a lesson in patience and untangling them certainly provided an opportunity for me to practice patience. So I set to work on them one Friday evening and over the course of five hours, these lights, once tangled, yet bright, were quite the opposite ~ untangled but dull. The pulling and hours of manipulating damaged the delicate wires and they no longer worked.  As I chuckled at the irony, I thought to myself, “I guess that’s the lesson here”. I saw the learning was maybe not in patience after all, but in the beauty of a tangled mess.

 Sometimes we are in a rush to get it all untangled and figured out or maybe we only see the chaos and messiness of the situations we are in – personally and professionally. I’m sharing this story because it serves as a reminder for me that sometimes I’m not where I want to be, maybe I feel a little tangled; and maybe you feel that way sometimes too. And it’s that’s ok. Learning to let some things untangle on their own or maybe just appreciate them as they are is ok too.  

As we head into the final two months of our school year, remember that everything won’t be untangled and neat in education or in life. I hope you see and appreciate the beauty in the tangles.


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