Stacking Wins

I once read about a special needs teacher who habitually celebrated victories, even if those victories seemed small. Did a student successfully tie his shoe? For some, this action might be inconsequential, but for this student, it's a profound victory. I imagine her classroom being joyful. Spontaneous celebrations and compliments would ring out as that community noticed all the things going right.

Today, I feel like celebrating something. At the start of February, I challenged myself to write here each day for a full month. It's now February 15, and this is the 15th post of the month. I'm doing what I set out to do! I'm proud. The significance isn't based on the size of the audience. The significance isn't whether a post goes viral or not. (In case you were curious: they don't.)

The significance is that I'm doing it.

You see, during 2020, which is a year that needs no explanation, I wrote only 14 total posts the entire year. The next year, 2021, wasn't any better. Again, I wrote just 14 times. Those were hard years. While there were good days and moments, I struggled with depression. Words didn't come easily.

So, today I celebrate this 15th post. Fifteen posts in one month! That's more posts than I wrote in the entirety of the train wreck that was 2020. It's more than I wrote in 2021. This 15th post is a marker that shows progress. And, as I learned from a wise special education teacher, it's important to celebrate progress.

My husband directs a ministry where he's the chaplain of a college football program. College football is a highly niche, highly competitive, and highly driven community. They need to be. The whole point of the program is to win. During his years with the team, he's adopted some of their terminology. One phrase used by the coaching staff is the concept of "stacking wins." This doesn't only refer to a literal win on a Saturday afternoon in the fall, although these Saturday wins certainly are the goal. It's referring to a good practice, followed by a good lift, followed by a good session reviewing tape, followed by a show of good teamwork.

You stack the wins. Small wins build into larger wins. Wins of character, wins of discipline, wins of personal growth. This is the type of win regularly celebrated in the special education classroom. It's the type of win I'm celebrating here with you today as we share this 15th blog post of February.

It's easy to focus on when we fall short. It's easy to notice when we stumble or when we don't meet the expectations set by ourselves or others. But today, let's celebrate a win. Let's notice a victory, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, and give thanks for it.

Let's stack the wins.

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