What I shouldn’t say: Slice of Life

What I shouldn't say: Slice of Life #sol16 There's a Book for That

I have had a really hard year. Truth.

I can hint at why and wrap up the truth in nuanced imagery that only I understand. Truth.

I really just want to lay it all out on the page. Truth.

Because what I am not talking about, not writing about, not sharing is a bunch of not okay stuff that really should be talked about. Truth.

I work in a system and live in a world where it seems keeping all things quiet and all things confidential is more important than being vocal about things that are wrong. Truth.

I am so tired of this. Truth.

Words are powerful.

The truth does not like to be quietly ignored.

My bravest moments have been when I have written about things I was afraid to share.




I know what I can’t say. But I can push right up to the edges. Because my voice is my own. And there is power in words.

The moment we stop believing that our truth matters is when we lose our power.

When we don’t expect a better truth going forward, we feel smaller.

Keeping ugly things quiet is like nurturing something rotten. It just plain stinks.

I am sick of the smell.

Inhaling it gets easier as time passes.


Bad Irony: Slice of Life

Slice of Life is hosted by Two Writing Teachers. I thank them for the community they provide. Read more slices here.


40 thoughts on “What I shouldn’t say: Slice of Life

  1. And this is a brave thing, your writing, taking the step to share your feelings that it hurts when that truth, though ugly, cannot be shared. I am with you in spirit, Carrie. Bravo!

  2. This stinks. And you hold on to this which is tears at you. I stand with you friend and I hope that helps. Know that your truth is believed and your voice is heard. That you can’t be silenced. Your actions are speaking.

  3. “The moment we stop believing that our truth matters is when we lose our power.”
    This is so, so important. Reminds me of a poem (title escapes me) where 2 people are arguing about the world being flat. The louder arguer finds all ways to show the other person that the world is flat, but the last line “The world continues being round” resonates. We have to hold onto what we know is true, despite louder, more powerful voices trying to convince you that you are wrong or mistaken. I am so sorry you’ve been in a situation where secrecy is valued more than honest, open dialogue. So glad you are saying as much as you can say and I hope, in time, wrongs will be righted for everyone’s sake.

    Just a word about your writing- you always use such interesting structures. This one was especially powerful and the last line packed quite an emotional punch. You are such a gifted writer. I look forward to every post.

  4. “There is power in words” – so true. That phrase reminds me of how Lucy Calkins talks about how powerful writing is – it can change ourselves, it can change the world. You may not be stating the true thing, but you’re thinking about it and writing about it. Sometimes we have to start with small steps.

  5. Oh I see you are living my life this year as well. It’s painful. Lies and secrets are so insidious. I don’t let them in my family life, but I can’t seem to keep them out of my work life. Truth.

  6. Your words are your truth and your words always honor your students — always. That is a truth you can hold on to and know you have not ignore or held in. You will find a way to speak the truth, tell your story, honor your students, and make change. Once again your writing is beautifully crafted and structured. Believe…

  7. This is a powerful piece. It seems you aren’t saying anything. But that is the power. As I read it, I thought of all the things I put up with that stink. I am still pondering why? Maybe because my “client” is a child and I want them to believe they are getting the best, even when I know they aren’t always. Maybe because the system seems too big and broken and what can my truth really do to bring any real change. Your piece is powerful and I know it will linger with me for a long while. Thanks for being brave to write it.

    • Truth and bravery are so connected. It seems sad that we have to be brave when it comes to the truth. Makes one wonder about all of the obstacles in the way of revealing it.

  8. Carrie, first of all I am sorry that you are experiencing such negativity around you. Being alone in a sea of negative waters is a difficult swim to shore. Let your positive voice break through the mucky waters where it can and swim strong to the #lastbell of the school year. I hope your next appointment is one filled with positive people surrounding you.

  9. Carrie I know how much you love the work you do with your students. I am so sorry that you are experiencing such pain in other areas. Your writing moves and inspires me each time I read it. Hope next year finds you in a place that is joyful and renewing.

  10. So sorry to read this, Carrie. I wondered at why you were moving on and I hope that it is all for reasons that energize you. You give so much.

    Tell the truth, even the part that hurts. You don’t need to tell it publicly, but do tell it so that you get it out and can see the smallness of it. Untold lies, deceptions hurt. Told lies show the coward beneath the discourse.

    Peace to you.

  11. The moment we stop believing that our truth matters is when we lose our power.
    When we don’t expect a better truth going forward, we feel smaller.

    Such wise words…it takes courage to face the truth, name it, speak it, and then move on. I know you know your truth, Carrie – and I know you will do what it takes to move forward.

  12. Well done Carrie! In my work as an educator, there are a lot of things that I don’t talk publicly about that truly stink – although some things I do. I’m thinking today about my choices, and who and what I am actually protecting through this. Thanks for the inspiration to think a little deeper this morning. I’m also glad your voice is connecting despite all the challenges.

  13. The moment we stop believing that our truth matters is when we lose our power.
    YES!!! Sounds like you are struggling to stay true to your truth and so glad that writing is helping you. Sending you all my most positive vibes… Summer is almost here!

  14. I have felt this exact same way before! Knowing that there is injustice happening, knowing that you can’t change it, but just have to get it out through writing so it doesn’t eat you up, but also knowing that you can’t say the whole truth. That’s what’s hard. Hang in there! I hope it passes soon or you find a way to confront it or get away from it!

  15. The repetition of truth is so powerful. I started an entirely different slice but couldn’t finish it because of the things I couldn’t say. Bravo for writing this! Stand firm in your truth! You are not alone!

  16. Grrr (this is me ready to take on dragons with you) I want to jump right in and do battle at your side, but I know you have taken on as much as you can to conquer the beast that you can’t write about. Shall we drink wine this weekend? I have a cold bottle of prosecco in my fridge….

  17. “I know what I can’t say. But I can push right up to the edges. Because my voice is my own. And there is power in words.” Such a powerful piece of writing. It is difficult to not be able to express the truth of our situations. I read this slice this morning and was saddened and didn’t know how to respond. Hold on to the better truth going forward. Here’s to a better situation waiting for you that will allow you to speak your truth.

  18. Carrie, my heart aches for you as you grapple with the external daggers that are poking and prodding while you struggle to contain an imprisoned truth that screams to NOT be held in-check.
    Wishing you peace of mind and new joys to fill your heart.

  19. I have known a few educators who have left the profession, or in the very least, left schools, over situations you have described so profoundly well. It’s even worse when the truth is known, and nothing is done about it. I hope you are able to find peace, or at least distance from the bad stuff, soon.

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