Tuesday, February 17, 2009


What education is for me ...

School was always a safe haven. Other than being in my sister's presence, it was the only place I could go and know that I would be okay. School for me was an escape. It doesn't matter what I was escaping from - maybe it was just into creativity, away from ignorance and into a world of knowledge and endless possibilities. Not everyone feels that way, I know, but I was the kid crossing my fingers and praying unceasingly that school would not be closed on those snowy days. Yeah, that was me. A total freak. But I loved it, everything about it. We were a family not connected by blood but by something that was nearly just as unbreakable - education and all that goes into it.

I'm not too far from that very same little girl ... I still value education. I am a teacher. It is not a job. It is my livelihood.

But, it may be time to take a break before I lose the very passion and faith that I had in teaching and in education as a whole when I was sitting in front of the TV crossing my fingers.

I'm just pretty angry right now because for as much as I'm far from perfect, love gossip and have way less than 100% days, I see someone else in this same building who doesn't seem to give a shit about the students, about the idea of a school family, about being cohesive, about communicating effectively, about much of anything except for image. How can one thrive in such an environment?

Education is not and should not be treated like a business. Because it isn't. It's a service profession. We serve. We aren't to be served. Not our pockets, not our egos ... It's not about us. It's about them. How is that so easily forgotten?

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Why I'm not a Godmother ...

I have this friend. I use that term loosely. You see, once upon a time, I considered her a BEST friend - that kind of friend who you would trust with every secret, every promise, every sin ... everything.

You know how life is ... people change. Sometimes you firmly believe that there are bonds so strong that nothing will get in the way. That's what I thought about me and her. I figured our bond was unbreakable. But, apparently, it wasn't.

We've had a roller coaster of a friendship and there are so many things that I could share to explain it but in one of our many ups and downs, we had a conversation where she told me why I wasn't her son's Godmother. See, I was supposed to be. I knew that. But when she told me who would be, I didn't flinch when it wasn't me. It wasn't a surprise because we weren't currently super tight - this happened three years ago with her first child, too.

For whatever reason, during a 5 hour conversation, she told me why I wasn't. Okay. Thanks. Here it is ...

I voted for someone she didn't. Who you vote for, according to her, shapes and tells everything about you. And she was disgusted by my choice. I wasn't the same person anymore, she said. I was different. The way she emphasized that word I knew she thought it was all horrific. Apparently I was less of a Christian now, too. And I have gay friends. God forbid I socialize with such repulsive sinners. And I make poor choices and my morals and values are just different (again, read "bad") than hers. She doesn't want her child to be like me.

She went on. And on. I said nothing. Finally, after what seemed like eternity, though it couldn't have been more than ten minutes. She just stopped. She said, "well, can you say something?"

I cannot tell you how much this hurt. When someone you think loves you unconditionally has the capacity to say such things, it doesn't matter how ludicrous it might seem, it tears you apart.

What gets me most is she failed to focus on things that have changed that are good ... it's been several weeks and we have not spoken. I can't bring myself to do it. No matter what I say, I will be wrong. Because I'm different. Because I've changed. Apparently for the worse.

I know it isn't true. But it just kind of sucks.