I talked to my grandmother on the phone Christmas morning. When I asked her how she was doing, she replied, You know, I guess I’m doing pretty well for a woman of almost 90. Can’t kick as high as I used to, but I guess I’m not very inclined to kick high anymore, anyway.
Her response made me giggle, but it also made me wonder: how do you ensure that, if you’re lucky enough to make it to 90, you are this kind of 90– honest, funny, and truly grateful, in spite of the inevitable loss that comes with living that long?
When I was working through my teaching program, one of my instructors was a huge proponent of using the backward design method to create curriculum. This approach requires a teacher to identify specific end goals and essential understandings so that they can determine which lessons, activities, and opportunities will help their students to be most successful. And I guess that this conversation with my grandmother has helped me to understand what a wonderful life metaphor backward design really is. Because maybe, if we can identify even a piece of what we’d like to do, or understand, or become, we will also recognize the teachers who will provide us with the opportunities and support that will enable us to get there.
I don’t have a solid plan in place for the future. I’m not sure where I’ll be, or when I’ll get there, or why I’ll be there. I do know, however, that I want to be as grateful and gracious as my grandma is– even if my kicks aren’t quite a high as they used to be.