I have always wanted to be a writer. When I was younger, while taking a class, we were told to tell our students that if they wanted to be writers, they needed to call themselves writers. We were encouraged to make sure that we called them writers in class. The most difficult thing that we were told was that we needed to call ourselves writers too. I did it. Quietly, and in a room by myself. Making sure that nobody heard me utter the words, “I am a writer.” It was a step, a baby step. I realized that as long as I kept it to myself, I could never be a writer, nor could I help students believe that they too were writers. After all, If you are not a writer, how can you teach others to write?
I took the first step. “Since we are all writers,” I begin one day in class.
A student interrupt, “Wait, you’re a writer.”
It was a challenge. I’m not positive that the student was challenging me, but it was a challenge. It was my moment of truth, “Yes, I am a writer.”
“What have you written?”
Here was the rub — what had I written? Sure, like so many others, I wrote poetry. I wrote essays. But was I published? I picked up the gauntlet. “I’ve written a lot.”
“Like what? Can you share it with us?”
And so I decided to. I shared with them things I had written — some were awesome. But most, like is the truth for all writers, was terrible.
I am a writer.
As I have narrowed my pursuit in education, I have found that supporting teachers with specific interventions and techniques that support education are floating in my head. Once again, I have found myself in a room, quietly uttering to myself, “I am an intervention specialist.” But as long as I stay alone, I cannot help students, nor teachers. As an RTI specialist, my knowledge helps no one. My hopes are to help other intervention specialists and teachers gain some understanding of techniques and interventions so that they can become more effective. A hope that they will no longer stay alone, in their rooms, uttering only to themselves.