I’m sick and lounging today. Watching feel-good, inspo videos that make me cry. Thinking about how much I care about what I do and how much resistance and ignorance I’ve faced along the way. For days I’ve been trying to compose an essay to explain what it’s like in a day of being a teacher’s assistant, spending two hours writing and erasing it because it’s too long already, and I’ve only gotten to 2nd period without truly delving into it. I was thinking about asshole I have to see everyday and their catty comments, their vacant stares, when it dawned on me: I don’t need their recognition anymore. They might casually agree with me, offer half-hearted solutions, but in truth someone like me who cares so much, who wants to do the right thing, who BELIEVES THE SYSTEM CAN BE BETTER, forces them to face their own shortcomings as professionals. Not that I’m the best, but I obviously try a lot harder. I wouldn’t be satisfied teaching my kids the bare minimum or associating with people that joke about their physical attributes. I guess through all of this I have found an incredible passion for helping and protecting kids I didn’t know I had – they are precious, they deserve to be believed in, they deserve to be encouraged, and they deserve to be given the best tools to fit their scope of learning. So even though I have days like these where I really doubt myself and I doubt my future as a SPED teacher, and I don’t know where I’m going to get a job at, I have to keep going because I can’t STAND the thought of yet another unqualified jackass taking my spot and shorting these kids on the only educational opportunity they get.
Wow. What a year it’s been! I went back and read my own posts and laughed. I’ve changed so much and I hadn’t even realized it. My perspective feels completely different now. Look at all the stupid shit I wigged out about, lol.
… before the school year started I had a gallbladder attack, went to the E.R. and got it removed, plus an additional surgery the next day to clear out floating stones from my GI tract – alone. And that lead the demise of one of my closest friendships… and I’m actually pretty proud of myself for not wasting 6, 7 months seething or stewing over it. I realized when things don’t work out, it sucks, but what’s the use of figuring blame? Shit happens, and it wasn’t working anymore.
The school year has been CRAZY. Just gotta watch shit you can’t control happen and keep it moving! It motivates me to work harder in school. I will officially begin the process of being alternatively certified to teach Special Ed next year, and once I get a teaching job, pursue a Master’s in Special Education – Mild / Moderate.
I’M ALSO GRADUATING COLLEGE THIS SEMESTER!!! I’m so proud of myself. Yeah it took me a decade, but I clearly figured out how to enjoy learning and am passionate about my degree because I’m actually retaining information and explaining to other people how intersectionality works and why it’s important, and trying my best to promote acceptance. I tried and I’ve done REALLY GOOD! I’ve been a C / D student all my life – MY WHOLE ACADEMIC CAREER – up until the past two or three years when I actually tried. I made A’s and B’s. I would’ve made more A’s but people started realizing I know what I’m talking about and hiring me to tutor them, and they made B’s. So let’s say I earned honorary A’s. In addition, had I been a traditional student who knows what job I’d be working. I’m graduating just on time and getting the perfect career just in time for the big pay raise whether or not I’m a teacher in two years. Had I not taken this route I might not have found out that I’m passionate about helping people and bettering my community. I might have still been stuck or aimlessly searching for fulfillment. I’m super excited to teach my own classroom. I have all these great ideas about how to run it, and want to promote teaching kids about their peers who have special needs. I don’t want to just raise awareness, I want to promote inclusivity and the stigmatization my kids face everyday even by well meaning people.
My year has been so interesting. I went to therapy for four months and while she wasn’t my favorite, I realized some solid things about my personality that I hadn’t accepted or knew but weren’t at the forefront of my consciousness. I can take things too seriously, I can be too judgy, and am probably over concerned with right / wrong and correctness. I can understand how those are hard traits to connect with but it’ll make me a damn good leader someday. I’m working on chilling out and not being so attached to outcomes and living in the present. So far it’s working pretty well… it’s lead me to a bigger interest and belief in spirituality and the “law of attraction”. The weird part is how I made a vision board, (it needs work. One of these days I’m going to cut out the parts of it I like so I can create a do-over) and I put several pictures of beaches on it. I didn’t have a plan or anything, I’m just like “Hell yeah, beaches.” A few months later my cousin messaged me out of the blue inviting me to Cabo where she has a time share she bought with her parents. Then my parents invited me to go with them to Florida about a week later. The really weird part… is that I took the time off and got subs despite not having any sick / personal time, and low and behold it’s the same week as the Teacher Walkout. So yeah I’ll still be losing money but at least I’ll be doing it sipping Pina Coladas in the sunshine, near the ocean, and come back with some kind of guaranteed raise for next year.