Disrupting Burnout

97. Breaking Barriers in Education with Roberta Axson

July 05, 2023 Dr. Patrice Buckner Jackson Episode 97
Disrupting Burnout
97. Breaking Barriers in Education with Roberta Axson
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Have you ever pondered the unique struggles and triumphs of teen moms? What if there was a way to support and empower them to not just survive, but thrive and create a lasting legacy for their families? Well, this is exactly what Roberta Axson, a second-generation teen mom turned nurse educator and founder of Teen Moms 2 Beyond, is doing. She's built a supportive community and developed tailored resources, and we're delighted to have her share her inspiring journey with us.

Remember how it felt to face the first formidable challenge of your teen years, seemingly alone in the world? Roberta Axson faced just that, becoming a teen mom at 16 years old. Instead of succumbing to societal expectations and pressures, she decided to confront her reality head-on and used her experience to craft a successful career in education and leadership. She provides a candid insight into the unique perspective of teen moms, underscoring how crucial it is for the larger community to understand and meet their needs. Roberta's personal journey fuels her passion for helping teen moms, and she's here to share how her work is revolutionizing not only the Teen Moms 2 Beyond community but also the entire community involved in family restructuring.

But Roberta doesn't stop there; she's also a beacon of light in the education field. With no-nonsense advice on the significance of authenticity and self-care for educators, she encourages teachers to embrace their individuality, and disregard the temptation to mimic others. Roberta wraps up with some profound reflections on the societal expectations placed on women, and the emotional reactions they often provoke. You'll walk away feeling not only inspired by Roberta Axson but also equipped with some valuable nuggets of wisdom. Tune in for this enlightening conversation!

Download an audio sample of Dr. PBJ's brand new book:  https://www.patricebucknerjackson.com/book

Connect With Roberta:
Instagram: @ra_axson

Website: https://teenmoms2beyond.net/

Beyond the Birthing Event:  https://teenmoms2beyond.net/teen-mom-2-beyond-event/

 

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Speaker 1:

Hey, hey, hey, friends, I am Dr Patrice Butler Jackson, but you can call me PBJ. Welcome to another episode of Disrupting Burnout. Friends, listen, july is back to school with PBJ And this month we are dedicated to our educators. Whether you are a teacher in the classroom or an administrator, a principal, an AP, if you work at colleges or universities, if you are a trainer at your job, if you are an educator, this month is dedicated to you. I don't know if you've listened to my story, but this work started so that I could serve my people. I could serve educators and give you what.

Speaker 1:

I know that we need to keep serving and doing the deep work that we do. So, friends, listen, i know that we're still in summer and we are, And for some of you, that means you have some off time. For some of you, that means you're still working. I know we're still in summer, but I think it's very important that we think about a few things about August before we get there. Sometimes August comes in like a Mack truck and it's almost like you weren't ready for it. You will be ready for it this year. I want to make sure that we give you what you need so that you are preparing your heart, your mind, your body, your family, your home. You're preparing all the things so that you can have the best school opening you have ever had. And I could not have a better guest to kick off this back to schools series than the woman I am about to introduce you to.

Speaker 1:

I met Roberta Akson in a coaching program that we both joined And from the first day, from the first day of this coaching program, you can't be in a space with Roberta and not be impacted by the love of God Like you can't. You can't be around her, you can't be close to her without feeling the impact of love. That is who she is, and this woman is an educator, she's a mentor, she's a transformational leader, she's a speaker, she's the founder of Teen Moms 2 Beyond. She will tell you more about that. There's so much that she brings to the table, but I want you to know that the love that you experienced through engaging with Roberta Akson. We met online, we connected online, but this woman got in her car and drove to Augusta, georgia, to give me a hug. This is, this is who she is. So listen, without further ado, without further ado, i need to introduce you all to my friend, my sister, fellow educator, roberta Akson. Roberta, thank you and welcome to Disrupting Burnout sister.

Speaker 2:

I feel welcomed. Thank you so much, dr PBJ. You said a lot You said, and I felt that. I felt that, thank you.

Speaker 1:

You are a lot and I love it. I love it all. I love it all. So, roberta, let's get started, because I know by now they're wondering who is this woman. So tell the people who you are.

Speaker 2:

Well, yes, ma'am, my name is Roberta Akson and I get to serve in a capacity as a mentor, as an educator, as an empowerment leader Yes, an empowerment leader and the founder of Teen Moms 2 Beyond And basically the Teen Moms the number two beyond is because I am a second generation of being a Teen Mom. My mother had me at the age of 16 and I had a child at the age of 15, but it stopped there. It stopped there. So the community where I am serving as the founder and Teen Moms 2 Beyond is basically to provide resources and support so that we can maintain and sustain families, restructure, rebuild, whatever we need to do to be that resource and support one family at a time so that they can build and sustain their legacies to be better, to be beyond where they are, to get what they need. So I am honored that God would give me such a vision in this earth for such a time as this.

Speaker 1:

Listen, i felt that all over my body. I felt that all over my body what you are bringing to the Teen Moms 2 Beyond community, but also think about every community that those women impact, every community that those women impact and the restructuring of the family. As an educator, i know you have seen the outcomes and the consequences in your students of having a Teen Mom or even being a Teen Mom, but I know you didn't just pull this out the air. So tell us your story, because you are a nurse, you are an educator moving into leadership. But it didn't start there.

Speaker 2:

You know, dr PBJ, when I think about that conversation in that doctor's office close to 40 years ago now, because my son will actually be 37 in August, he will actually be 37 and going to the doctor and not receiving pre-natal care for over half of the pregnancy, because I just did not know. I did not know that I had life growing inside of me. But who would have thought that God would use that life to propel me into such areas to where I truly can make a difference? I truly was able to do something different. And so when we talk about the classroom, we talk about the doctor's office. You know, from being a nurse, from that nurse visiting me that night saying you still have a chance. This child is going to be dependent on you. What will you do with your life? And then the door is opening to where I can begin a career as an LPN and then on to becoming a registered nurse and on to becoming a healthcare science educator, so where I'm now educating those students to go into the field of healthcare.

Speaker 2:

But it started in that doctor's office with that conversation from my doctor saying It's something that you did a long time ago because I didn't even know. Again, i didn't even know I was pregnant And so removing myself from that month of getting pregnant, having consensual sex, saying yes to something that I didn't even realize, what I was saying yes to, and fast forward to, sitting there numb and shamed and disappointed, depressed I mean. It was just so many emotions attacking me at once. And my mother, just to think of her thinking about. She had recently lost her mom, five years prior to her getting pregnant at the age of 16, losing a mother at the age of 11, and five years later you're pregnant with your first child, and now that child is having a child. So what can we do differently? hearing the voice, but then it's like the muffled sound of your pregnant, like what does that really even mean? I didn't know what am I going to do with this? Can I give it back? like all of that coming forth with a force that I could not control, i could not redirect it in any area. This is in me. You mean to tell me something that I did is now in me still the ignorance of sometimes making those decisions and you don't know what you did. So I get it to when I think about the restructuring of the family, and God really has a sense of humor, because I never wanted to teach. I never, ever wanted to teach, but this is something that he gave me as an assignment to build me. I feel for this capacity because it's about the family.

Speaker 2:

And when you have those children that come into your classroom, into your offices, into your building faces, and they're not equipped because they have a teen mom or a single mom or just parents, that's trying to figure it out, you know, because sometimes it is, they have a mother and a father at home, but then they're still that gap, and so the restructuring, the assignment, the call, the burden, the weight of it, it is so big. That's why the beyond is the focal point. It's not that we're going to focus on a teen mom always, because the heart that I have is, when there's a young girl that's pregnant, we hover over that young girl, we make sure the baby has pamphlets, we make sure the baby has formula, but then, as that child is growing up, that child becomes one and two and three and four, and that teen mom is continuing to grow. Where's the support? I had to figure it out. I was in high school with a three year old. Come on, i had a three year old, but nobody thought about that, maybe that I still needed help, i still needed guidance, i needed support And I had people saying well, you just need to just get a job and just you know, you don't need to go to school because, of course, the environment that you're in, your classmates are getting accepted to colleges.

Speaker 2:

You know that's really not your path. At that time I say that it couldn't be. But at that time, so what do I do? I didn't know. But sometimes, as a young mother, we don't know the questions to ask. Yeah, and so for me to be able to go back and reach for the ones that are assigned to me, because I know I'm not here to save the world, that is not my assignment. But, oh, do I remember how I wish I could have, would have? I had support, but there were things that people could not understand, they could not relate unless unless it was their story. Yeah, so that is how team moms to beyond came about. It was birth through understanding that I can move beyond my choice, beyond statistics, beyond your judgment of me. Hmm, yes, it's a beyond thing. You may not understand it.

Speaker 1:

Oh, roberta. So first of all, this is why I'm a member of your community And I'm so grateful that you are. This is why. So I was not a team mom, but my mama was. My mama was 16 years old 16, she was a baby. You were a baby 16 years old And at 16, she started making decisions, not just for her life but for mine. And then my brother, who came along later, and my sister, who came along later. My mother had a baby at 16 years old, went to work immediately. She was an athlete. She had to give up. My mom was a championship basketball player. She was an athlete. She let that go when I came along, but she never stopped winning.

Speaker 1:

Let me tell you something My mama went to work at our local hospital when those hours didn't align with what she needed to take care of her baby. She went to a hair school, she got her license, she opened her own salon and she has had her salon 30 years. How many small business owners can say they've been open and thriving for 30 years? So that's why I will always live to bring her honor, always. I will always live to bring her honor because, even as such a young age, she started making decisions for my now.

Speaker 1:

I would not be where I am today if it wasn't for 16 year old Patricia Jones. So I just wanted to pause and honor my mama, but also honor you, because not only did you make decisions to support your son and then the son that came later, but also look at what God has created. Look at what he's doing. From your story, roberta, talk to us about how in the world did you go from teen mom to I'm going to nursing school? Like what does that look like? How did you do that with babies? Like how did that happen?

Speaker 2:

It's like what you just mentioned. There were no delays in decision making. You have to do something now. You have to do something for that moment because I'm not sure about you. But I felt the guilt, even from my mom, of not being able to do things, and I love my mom and I'm so grateful that she made the choice to have me. Number one I'm here, but at the same time, the things that have to be pushed back and delayed because of the decision of now. There was a now decision.

Speaker 2:

And so when I realized I was in a health occupations course in high school and it was just something where I just enjoyed serving, i enjoyed seeing people do better, get better. So the nursing aspect, being able to be at that bedside with that physician, with the teen, and seeing where we actually start with the discharge planning on the very first day, it is that you know we work from backwards to forward And I just I love everything about it. It was just the fulfillment I felt at that time to where I needed to pause. I needed to give myself time to complete this so that I would have more, because the $3.85 an hour was not enough for 1990.

Speaker 2:

For a woman with a child, minimum wage was not gonna keep me stuck and stagnant. I just couldn't allow that. So it was no delaying in that decision. I needed to do something at that moment, and so nursing was it. And I would start with the foundation, with you know which the licensed practical nurse was for me a foundation. Now, you don't have to always start there, but I knew that if I worked as an LPN, i could go back to school for my RN while working as an LPN, and it will give me the experience. It will give me more than a $3.85 an hour.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Opportunities, and so that's how the door just opened for me to do that.

Speaker 1:

I love and I appreciate the nurse and the doctor who told you your life is not over And that you can make decisions now, and I so appreciate that you are sharing that message forward, because I have encountered so many folks who feel condemned, who feel thrown away, who feel like their life is over, like they cannot move forward. They don't know what their options are. They don't know how in the world they're gonna do it. So I'm so grateful for the ministry that you have now to encourage teen moms, whether they have the newborn right now, or if their kid is grown now and they still feel stuck. As that teen mom, i appreciate that you are helping them move beyond. So talk practically. Maybe there's a teen mom who's listening to us right now, or maybe she's in her early 20s and it's just her. Maybe she's a single mom and she's got this little one. What are some practical things that you did or you had to do in order to accomplish this goal of getting this education but also taking care of this baby?

Speaker 1:

Hey friend, listen, i have exciting news for you. So if you've been following, you know I've been writing this book and I am so excited about getting it into your hands. And guess what? Today I'm offering you the first sample of my new book. This is my new book Disrupting Burnout. Friends, listen, we have more work to do. Okay, it's still going to professional editing, we still need to design the book, but I can't wait to all that's done for you to start digging in. So there's a sample copy that I read myself for you that's available to you today. All you have to do is go to wwwpatricebuttnerjaxsoncom slash book again patricebuttnerjaxsoncom slash book. Grab your sample, listen to the sample chapter and listen. Let me know what you think. I cannot wait for you to hear this book, friend, go grab it today.

Speaker 2:

Well, it actually is the root of my pillars. I have five pillars in the community that I serve to be on, and that is, first and foremost, self-care. I did not know how to self-care, care for self, i did not. And so the foundation of being able to take that sea law, that pause, to where I need to just take a breath, i need to just be in the moment, because we're always rushing And as a team mom former team mom you're always feeling like you're behind. You had a child, now you gotta play catch up. You have to catch up, but it's a lifestyle And I think sometimes we think that, oh, this is where I am and I've arrived.

Speaker 2:

But no, no, this is where I am, but where am I going? I have to move beyond this part, the next phase and seeing it in cycles and phases. So, self-care, number one I had to learn, and I am still learning, how to care for self in different phases of my life. So I would definitely speak to that team mom, that former team mom you have to take time for you, you have to take that time for you, whatever that looks like. And sometimes we say, oh, i can't afford to go on a vacation. Well, you can afford to go to the park, you can afford to do whatever it is where your budget is speaking.

Speaker 2:

So, number two, the time management making time for you, making time for the things that are priorities for you, to you. So as you invest now, you will benefit later, and that's the number one. Resource is time. So self-care, time management. And then there's money management. You cannot manage money until you're able, till we are able to manage the time that we've been given. We all have 24 hours, seven days a week. The year passes. Each and every day, each and every second, each and every minute is gonna accumulate and accrue the same time value. But what are we doing to develop our sales with the time and manage our sales with the time and the money, the resources that we've been interested with?

Speaker 2:

Like I stated earlier, $3.85 was not a lot, but I made it stretch, i made it work, i knew I wanted more, i knew I needed more, but what was I willing? What time was I willing to invest in the more then that I needed? And so the self-care, time management, money management.

Speaker 2:

And then the last two pillars that I have in the group are personal development and professional development, and, in my opinion, you cannot develop as a professional person until you dig deep and know who you are, your identity, and sometimes, as children are born to a young mother, that identity is a tag.

Speaker 2:

There's an identity crisis even for the teen mom. Who am I, what purpose am I here for? And so being able to develop personally, spiritually, mentally, emotionally, spiritually all of the things physically that will help us to develop into the professional person that we need to be, that capstone of my purpose in the professional development, and then that's what we're able to go out and serve as a whole person to the ones that are still trying to find their way. And being that guide, being that facilitator, because we understand self-care, because we understand time and money management, because we understand personal and professional development. It's key, it's critical. And so the former teen mom or the teen mom now, that's part in any of those pillars. They're able to connect, they're able to find their way, their path and build from there.

Speaker 1:

The fact that you didn't start with the professional development is so important, because often we start with the what am I gonna do? What am I gonna do? Who am I gonna be? What am I gonna do? But you started with self-care and it's often the last thing that a mom is thinking about a teen mom, or any mom The self-care is the last thing that she's thinking about. But we know the truth is, if we don't start there, then we can't sustain what we're doing for anybody else. Exactly, it is so critical to start there And then to go with the time management.

Speaker 1:

You can't manage your money unless you manage your time. Roberta, you are preaching today because people are figuring out ways to make more money every day, but let me know who can make more time. Please tell me how you can make more time. We all get the same amount of time just by waking up and breathing as long as we're alive. We're getting the same amount of time every day, but it's limited. It's limited And we have to be a good steward over our limited resource. Oh, that's so good. That's so good. So okay, because we got to talk to these educators, because those five pillars that you just mentioned are important for educators, whether they are teen moms or not. So talk to me about. Let's go back to your story. How did you move from nursing to teaching and teaching the course that had such an impact on you in high school? Now listen, tell us about it?

Speaker 2:

Nobody but God. Like I mentioned, i would never and I even said that to someone that spoke that I would be teaching. I said, oh, i would never do that. They don't make enough money. That is what I had the nerve to say And God said, okay, i'll show you. And really he showed me.

Speaker 2:

But when I tell you the most rewarding and I thought, nursing was my everything. I was so grateful to be chosen to completion of a program that could make a difference not just for my life, my child's life, but for others. But when I tell you, being an educator, my heart just, it just throbs for being that voice, being present with my presence, the gifts that he trusts me with those students, they mean everything to me. They mean everything. And so when I get the opportunity to serve them in the capacity that he entrusts me to serve them, it's major. It's major And I try to run, i try to hide, but that's where the leadership is rising up in me now. But, being an educator for the past 18 years, i can't think of anything else. That it's that, god, really. And the fact that the way he even got me to this point I had he even brought witnesses, dr PBJ to where, when he spoke it to me, he brought she's my mentor now, but he brought another educator and the principal that hired me to make sure I knew. Yes, i said you're getting ready to teach my children And so it's so much bigger than a classroom. That's the thing, and I'm so grateful that I get to serve them the way he allows me to serve them, not the standards for the Department of Education of Georgia, but the way God desired that I serve them and teach them and groom them for more. They're beyond as well. They're beyond the classroom, they're beyond high school and middle school. I've never taught elementary, but I taught middle and high school. They're beyond and that they can make a difference. So just to be, i'm just honored And just to be chosen from my background of being a former teen mom to now being able to teach and lead in such a way, that is really it's mind blowing to me sometimes, because I can't even believe that the things that he shows me, that are coming And I'm like, okay, i have to trust you because I trust you back then, how you equip me, because Dr PBJ, when I first started teaching in, this goes to show you God does not.

Speaker 2:

He doesn't call the qualified, he qualifies the call.

Speaker 2:

I had an associate degree I only had an associate's degree in nursing And I had a colleague of mine to say that an associate degree is not a degree And I was offended by that because I'm just like I worked very hard for that nursing degree and passing the state board for my nursing license And the fact that sometimes people just don't see an associate's or licensed, a practical nursing program as equal or adequate enough.

Speaker 2:

But this is why we have to be in these classroom, in these buildings, office and space to tell the students it doesn't matter where you start, just start. Yeah, you start with one step And so, being in place, i truly have to cooperate and co-labor with God, because I look at sometimes the ones that are left behind because they're not the gifted or the chosen. I know how that feels. And for him to choose me for such a time as this to educate, to not just teach and touch with a heart for them, but to also love them and lead them to where they need to be. So I'm just honored to wear this door open for me to pursue this career, because when I think back from nursing to education to whatever else is on his agenda. I just wanna align myself and agree with whatever else he has for me.

Speaker 1:

That's the amen. It is so. We say amen because we agree, and that's the key. just agree, obesity is the success. Whatever the outcome is, it's up to him, but the obedience is the success. But at this point, roberta, you have had students 18 years of students that you have impacted their lives, and I know they come back and see you and they check in with you because I know what kind of impact you have. I know how you show up in a room, so I can only imagine being your student and having you pour into me, but I also know that when you are the person that pours, it cost you something. So talk a little bit to your fellow educators. So to the teachers, the administrators, folks who are listening to this episode. What would you encourage them to do to prepare themselves to start a new academic year?

Speaker 2:

It goes back to the pillar self-care. What does that look like? You may need to define it, because sometimes the academia in us we want to analyze, but we need to normalize and not analyze so much. as an educator. We have to take time for self. We have to take time to take those deep breaths to where our lungs can really feel the capacity of oxygen. We need the oxygen, we need that breath. We need life in us because we give so much to other lives. So we need that return.

Speaker 2:

So being able to sit, just having time to think. Bring a journal I travel with a journal. I have a journal in my prayer room that doesn't leave. I mean a journal in my car that stays in the car, a journal always on me, like with my backpack or purse. You sometimes you just need to sit with the thought. We have to take time to sit with a thought, not the thoughts, but a thought. What is a thought for today? And it could be refresh a word for today. It could be steal, steal yourself. Whatever it is. We have to normalize, not analyze so much the word self care and what it looks like, and not that it has to look the same, because what my self care regiment may look like at the beginning of the school year. It may not look the same after one month or two months or three months. Go back, just like we go to the doctor and we need to check up, whether it be annual or however quarterly we go back. So why not go back for that self care check up or check in, maybe?

Speaker 1:

That's so good. That is so good Oh my gosh, that's so good. So the self care and to think about it now, like don't wait until you get into the throes of August. Your students are in your classroom, the demands are happening and you are trying to figure out how to chase your tail. You're trying to figure out how to. no, you can make a plan, like be intentional. I love the way you have planted journals in every space of your life so that you can have think time.

Speaker 1:

I think one of the biggest losses that we had since the pandemic is, i think time, because we're going from one screen to another screen, to another screen, to in person, now to another screen that we don't ever stop. And just a little. yes, it's overwhelming. Our brain was not created to process information, not this amount of information, and it has nothing to do with your intelligence. It's because you're human. We were not created to process in this way And we're not even allowing the process to happen. So, just setting yourself up for success to make sure you incorporate some think time. What are some things, roberta? and we're gonna bring it to a close, but what are some things like throughout your days with your students? So you were in the classroom and I know you got professional learning and conferences and this and that and all those things. What are some things that you do throughout your days to kind of get that say lie as you say, that moment of rest.

Speaker 2:

Well, i enjoy music therapy as well. I do soaking where there's just instrumental music, to where I'm not trying to sing a song, no words, and it could be some Beethoven, mozart, it could be just listening to the water or the rain, the elements. It could be just me stepping out into the hallway because this is the first time I have not had a window in my classroom and it's been so hard for me Because I like seeing the light, i draw light because I am light, and I have to step out sometimes into the hallway and they're right there. I'm not going running downstairs or something without them, but just being able to step away. We don't know how to do that. Sometimes you need to take a lunch in your car, if you can or take a lunch somewhere else in a hallway at a table.

Speaker 2:

I even sit with the students sometimes at lunch because it changes up, just doing something different. It's doing the different, something that people wouldn't expect you in. I do. I dance with them. I mean I just change it. It just depends on whatever I feel. They teach me things, i teach them things.

Speaker 2:

Just I think again, it's the routine of people just wanting that analytical, the plan, the checklist, and it drives you insane sometimes because you're overwhelmed by all the things on the paper but you're not in tune to the person. You got all the things on the paper, but what about the person? The person is nowhere on that paper. And so just being able to redirect your spirit flow to something different, smiling, even smiling, a laughter to where, hey, does anyone have a joke today? they want to share. They don't know what to expect, dr PBJ, when they come to my class room, i mean I'm that teacher that. And like I tell them, you're not going to find a nurse and a teacher in this building. You have two for one. So I'm the only nurse and teacher. So don't expect me to be like anyone else, even as a leader, when I walk into my next role as an administrator. They're not gonna have a principal, an assistant principal. There's also a registered nurse, because I will always keep my nursing license. So it's just knowing who you are and what it feeds your spirit, your soul, your person. And when we take the time to think about who we are, why we hear, what things do we contribute into the areas and arenas that we've been called and assigned to, then it'll flow easier.

Speaker 2:

I think that we're sometimes suffocated and constipated with stuff to where we can't breathe. It hurts us to take a deep breath because we haven't done it in so long. So just do something. Laugh out loud. Who cares if somebody looking at you? We're so concerned about the people that are not concerned about us. I don't care what I look like or sound like. This is me, and I'm so in love with who I have become over the years from the struggles of not knowing how I would end up. So now that I'm here and for whatever journey ahead that God has me on, i say yes, it is so, and it starts now with saying it before it is.

Speaker 1:

I'm trying not to scream.

Speaker 2:

Scream.

Speaker 1:

Because I want the people to hear what you're saying. But, oh my gosh, y'all need to hear what I'm saying. I hope you hear this. As you're telling this, i hear secret sauce, secret sauce. This is your brilliance. It's your brilliance. You're not trying to show up as your mentor. You're not trying to show up as your principal or your AP. You're not trying to show up as any of it. Nothing wrong with being inspired by somebody else, but inspiration and imitation are two different things. They are two different things, and the freedom to show up as you and who you are and how you present and how you teach is so powerful, because that's what your students need from you. They don't need you to be the teacher down the hall. They don't need you to act like whoever the teacher of the year was, even though you were the teacher of the year. They don't need you to act.

Speaker 2:

And then, even with that, dr PBJ, how does a teacher of the year suppose to act or supposed to be? You will never be like me. So it's like don't try. Because when we compete and when we compare, we contaminate. Why do I want to be contaminated with what God gave me? So we got a lot of decontamination that needs to be occurring right now. So we have to teach and model that for the students as educators, as leaders, teachers, staff members, because we're all role models to those students. It doesn't matter what you do, you're not going to be the teacher, those students. It doesn't matter where you work in that building. You still are a role model. So don't compare to what they're cooking over there or how they do it over there, how they clean the school over there, how they lead over there, because when we compare and when we compete, we are all winners, we are all our victorious in what we have been called, anointed and appointed to do. So we got to show up as if we know that.

Speaker 1:

Ma'am, ma'am, when we compete and when we compare, we can, we contaminate. I cannot with you today. That's the truth.

Speaker 2:

Yes, you can, yes, you can, yes you can.

Speaker 1:

Listen, that's the truth. That's the truth And it's so powerful and it's easy. It's easy to slip into it, right? Because you might be watching somebody to learn, you might be watching somebody right, or paying attention to see how you can tweak or do something, and before you know it, before you know it, you compare yourself to that person and competing with that person And you have lost what you were created to bring Exactly. It's not the same without you. It's not. They could hire another person and they would never get the same bridge And they will.

Speaker 2:

When I'm no longer there. You have to know, and that's a no, dr PBJ, don't get me started with the leaders who's coming after you, who you are equipping to come in? They cannot take your place, you know, because we'll say, oh, so, and so is here to take Roberta's place. No, they cannot take my place. They take the position but not the placement. They're not me. So.

Speaker 2:

But sometimes as leaders, as educators, we're threatened by the ones that will come. Who will we pass the torch to? We got to pass the torch. We're not going to always be in that same place, so we have to be willing to submit to the next. Yes, so if we submit to the next in us, then we're able to submit to the next person and what it is that they must do. I love my mentor. I have two mentors. One of my mentors who was a healthcare science teacher, retired. She said these words to me 19 years ago when I first started teaching. She said I want you to take this program and I want you to make it better than what I did. I will never forget her And I was shocked that someone would say that out loud.

Speaker 1:

Yes.

Speaker 2:

You know we'll say, i know she's going to be better than what I did. I know, but she spoke it to me and it activated me, dr PBJ, to where I knew, now, moving forward, how to tell somebody. I want you to make this better than what I did Because guess what, at the end of the day, and all day, is for the children.

Speaker 1:

All day.

Speaker 2:

Is it really for you or about you, or is it really about our children? in my books, in every book, it's going to always be about the children, because I was that child that was looked over in that classroom at times. So it's going to always be about the children, and not always the gifted ones and the ones that have the 4.0.

Speaker 1:

Right, right, and let me say this not always the ones that are aware of their gift, exactly Because there are gifts that are hidden in your classroom. Those babies don't even know the gift inside of them because they haven't had anybody to shine a light and to call out brilliant. So don't think just because they can't see it, or because you can't see it yet, don't think that there's not a gift and there's not brilliance. If there's breath in their body, there is brilliance in that child. Yes, so we need our educators to look beyond the curriculum and look beyond the GPA and see the person, see the people that you're showing up for every day. When you can see the person that you're showing up every day, you don't get caught up in all the mandates and all the changes and all the stuff. Yes, that happens and it can be there.

Speaker 1:

That's not going to leave. That's not going to change. We approach it. That's not going to change. That's not going to change. But that doesn't have to be your focus. It doesn't have to be your focus. Why did you do this in the first place? Why did you choose this or why did it choose you? If you didn't choose teaching, why did teaching choose you in the first place?

Speaker 2:

Go back to the think chair. Go back to the think chair. Think about it. There it is. We have to go back. That. why That? why? Why am I here? Yes, ma'am, why was I chosen for this? Why did I choose this?

Speaker 1:

My goodness. Okay, roberta, we got to let these folks go, but before we do, you have something special coming up in August and I need you to let folks know what is going on with Team Moms 2 Beyond in August.

Speaker 2:

Yes, It is that time now that we would gather former Team Moms, single Moms, women born to Team Moms or supporters. If you are called into this room, we want you to be there for the Beyond the birthing experience, Who It is going to be? an event that is going to inspire and ignite you beyond. Your beyond is waiting, And sometimes we get called up in our past, but this is not about our past. It's beyond the past. It's beyond the choices that we've made that did not agree with our destiny and our purpose. Yeah, So we are so excited. It's August 26, 2023, and it's going to be held on the south side of Atlanta. If you want more information for purchasing tickets, you need to go to Team Moms, the number two Beyondnet. Again, that is Team Moms, the number two Beyondnet, and we are hoping to see you. In fact, we will see you.

Speaker 2:

I'm going to go ahead and just make that claim that we will see you And if there's some reason that you can't be there, support someone that you know that needs to be in the room, because on the website I do have a place where, if you would like to sponsor someone, please be that person that will be willing to soul into another young lady's life so that her family will feel the impact of this event beyond the birthing experience.

Speaker 1:

Oh, my goodness, Listen, even from this conversation, i know y'all can feel the power that's going to be in that room. So go get signed up. All the links will be in the show notes. How to be a part of Roberta's community will be in the show notes. Because you know you heard the call, your heart hears the call. You know you need to be in this community, you know you need to be connected to what God is doing through Roberta Axe. So I will make sure that you have all of these notes and everything in the show notes. Make sure you sign up for the beyond the birthing experience. My goodness, i'll guess y'all is.

Speaker 2:

And, dr PBJ, i just want to take this time to honor you because, even as I am able to pour, i understand the need for me to be poured in. So you are my professional development coach. You are my profession I want to say personal and professional, because you dip on both sides, but it's that finishing for me and I'm so honored that God did it. God did it. You are my professional development coach. I have a coach for each one of my pillars And I just want to take this time to honor you publicly for your continuous pour into me, so that I'm able to strip all the things that need to be removed, so that I can continue to show up As the person that I was born to be in this season of my time, and so that I can continue to pour into the ones that are called to me.

Speaker 1:

My gosh Roberta. I want you to know that it is an honor. It is an honor for me to walk with you in life, to be a part of your community, to be connected to you as sister and to share any and everything that Holy Spirit would give to me, to you, that would help you along your way. It's an honor. So, thank you, sister, who y'all you need to share this episode with somebody. You know an educator, you know a team mom or former team mom who needs to hear this conversation. Don't keep this to yourself. Share it with somebody so that their heart will get what it needs today. All right, do that for us And, as always y'all you know you are powerful, you are significant and you are loved. Love always, pbj. Bye everybody.

Back to School With PBJ
Teen Mom to Nurse Educator
Pillars of Success for Teen Moms
Self-Care and Preparation for Educators
Embracing Individuality and Authenticity in Education
Honoring and Sharing With Sisters