Updated: Apr 23, 2020
Life is always an education.
The best teachers are always learning.
And some of the best lessons come from some of the most unlikely places.
The other day I was paddleboarding when I witnessed a cormorant attempt to swallow the eel it just caught. The task proved challenging as the eel (what I could see anyway) was at least twice as long as the bird, never mind its gullet. In about as quickly as it tried to consume the meal, the bird gave up.
Waiting in the wings (pun intended) was a seagull. As soon as the cormorant discharged the eel, the gull was there to collect it in its beak. Good work, I thought. Way to be patiently waiting at the right place at the right time.
While not one for woo-woo lessons from the universe (okay, maybe I am!), I thought of a few takeaways in this minute-long scene:
1. Don't take on more than you can handle, but if you do... 2. Share the excess - to be generous or to lessen your load. 3. Wait your turn. Good things really do come to those who wait. 4. Let your wings dry out (cormorants have a wing-drying behavior different from other birds) and tackle your task again.
We all have a lot, I mean A LOT, on our plates as educators. Our jobs are part science and art, but moreover, social. Be sure to use that part to your advantage. People are what make the profession so great.
So, if you find yourself identifying more as a cormorant or more as a seagull, it doesn't matter. Just make sure you take time to enjoy the water and others around you.