The Escalator

Friday, March 4, 2016

Day 4

  An escalator going up!

     To my son, it was like an amusement park ride.  He wanted to go up and down the moving stairs over and over.  We had just spent the day at Brick World at the Renaissance Hotel in Schaumburg, and this was the highlight of his day.  I stayed at the bottom with my 2 year old daughter while my son bravely rode that escalator with his dad.  Not even 4 himself, I was paranoid he would fall.   When they came down, I remember having to close my eyes.  I thought he was going to fall for sure.  But, to my son, he was doing something new.  He was, like the escalator itself, moving up to the next level. When they got back to the ground level, he cried that his new adventure was over.  I guess he wanted to keep his learning going.  I think he might have been seeking independence, too.

     Flash forward 3 years, and there I was about to get on that very same escalator.  This time, I was at the Renaissance for the ASCD Kindergarten conference.  A day of learning was complete, and I was getting ready to go find my coworkers so I stepped onto the escalator, and  I looked up.  There was Jen Jones of Hello Literacy fame.  

     I think the words that came out of my mouth were something like, “Look at that.  I’m on my son’s favorite escalator, and now I’m standing next to my favorite blogger.”  Or something nonsensical like that.  Like she had any idea about my son's previous adventure.  She also had no idea that her work has helped me develop as a coach.  All I know is that I suddenly found myself telling Jen Jones how inspiring she was to me.  I found myself asking how she transitioned from a literacy coach to a consultant.  I actually asked her to sell me on using Instagram (which I do not use… yet).  

     Just like my son, I found myself moving up to the next level on that escalator.  Taking the risk to talk to her has already, in just the last 24 hours, pushed me to grow.  After that conversation and her sessions, I already set some new goals for myself. 

     The same can be said about my Tweet up with Connie Hamilton from #TMchat.  Her session on questioning was great, and afterward she met with me and gave me some tips on streamlining #D100chat.  Her  weekly #TMchat was my original inspiration for the format of #D100chat.  And here she was, in person, giving me an hour of her time to talk about her roles, Twitter chats, and the future.  

     We all need to decide when it’s time to push ourselves to improve, and take risks.  Will it take a friendly face to inpsire us?  A new book to direct us?  A person from our online PLN who we finally meet face to face?  Or our own desire to make a change for ourselves?

     At some point, we all have to make the choice to get on the escalator and start moving up.  Today, Jen Jones ended one of her sessions telling us to find people who inspire us.  Perhaps, if we do, they can ride the escalator with us.  Sometimes, it makes all the difference.  It just takes that first step to get on...  

     Thank you @hellojenjones and @ConnieHamilton 
for your inspiration and time. 


  1. Thank you for this! Thank you for sharing what made you move up, and for inspiring me to continue moving forward. This is exactly what I needed to read today!!!

    1. I'm so glad. Great things are ahead of you!

  2. Ahhhh Leah, this is so special. I'm so proud of you but I know even more that you are proud of yourself, you should be, stepping out of your comfort zone can really open some amazing new doors. Like Brandon of @teachingsmiles said about his own courage to introduce himself to Kayla Delzer (@topdogteaching) in Vegas, "the opportunity is greater than the risk."

    1. All I can think right now is "Jen Jones just commented on my blog." Yours is the first blog I regularly followed. So honored. And, you are right. I am proud I took that risk, for so many reasons. Thanks for being the kind person that you are and embracing a risk taker.