Such virile, care-free little freshmen...
It's a funny thing, this school business. You compel a kid to be immersed in it for 17 years, then you send them off into the wild blue yonder with only their gumption and imaginations to sustain them.
Well, maybe it's not that extreme. They might have some 200 thread-count extra-long twin sheets to drag along. And that's about it.
Gone will be the experience of striving to find the right room number, to search a sea of faces until a familiar one rises to the surface. I will bid adieu to making small talk about the elapse of time where I will hear about 10,000 ways to convey that Christmas break was, indeed, a pleasant experience--or just "good." No longer will I rush through a syllabus to peruse the assignments and instantly gather my plan of attack in my head. I'll say farewell to the vows I make to myself every semester-- that I am a wise student who will not procrastinate on my assignments and essays and stay up til 4 am on deadline days yet again.
Well...maybe not that last one.
But now that I think about it, the "first day of school" experience is not something that will be leaving my life anytime soon. Anytime I launch into a new undertaking, I am consciously going through the motions of the first day of school: a desire of acclimation and a chance to prove my worth. This happens to me every time I get a new job, and I'm sure it'll happen when I go through other life transitions: getting married, having kids, getting a "real" job. I've got to remember that I wasn't born to be a student, as much as I'd like to think so. I have gone to school as preparation for doing something good for this world, and that is a comforting thought.
Also comforting: enough people love me that I know I won't starve in the next year.
As I was sitting through my lectures today, I couldn't help but think how blessed I am to have attended a university and have met the most knowledgeable but caring faculty I could've dreamed for. I am surrounded every day by educators who are not only passionate for their studies, but have an earnest desire to share that joy with fellow scholars. Teaching is one of the most noble professions because teachers shape the minds--and, consequently, the lives--of their students, which has a profound effect upon generations of people. However, most teachers do not get to see the fruits of their labor; they are only able to see their seed germinate. It's an awe-inspiring thought, if you try to wrap your brain around it.
Lately, I have been growing frustrated by the number of conversations I've been having with well-meaning, polite people about the status of my future plans. Observe:
Well-meaning, polite person: So I hear you're graduating in May! Congratulations! What are you majoring in?
Me: English!!! :D
Well-meaning, polite person: Oh! So you're going to teach?
Well-meaning, polite person: ...
I want to shout from the rooftops that there's more to my major than being a teacher--that learning about the world I live in, the people who inhabit it, and those those people communicate with each other is one of the most valuable, marketable skills in the universe. There's not really a name for my passion or what I want to do with it--other than
So here's to you, my last semester of school. May I stretch my brain to learn more about the world, how to better understand the people around me, and how best to meet their needs.
And if I end up a teacher, then I have some great models to follow.
Oh. You weren't expecting rambling? You wanted food?
Here you go.
I'm going through a pie phase. I can't help it. They're exceedingly delicious.
You'll get to learn how to make it soon. I'll teach you.
Maybe I'll end up a teacher after all.