Thursday, March 25, 2010

Learn To Drown

what if for one minute

he's given a chance
and he does something brilliant
but he'd rather not know
cause walls protect him
his bedroom's a prison

now is your chance boy just ignore
the dreadful things they say
go on, give up, you’ll never win,
no crying now, they're watching him
his blood will boil, the kids will sing
learn to drown before you learn to swim
-Bayside


So, as I’m waiting for classes to finally begin, I’ve been doing a lot of research on what I want to do once I (hopefully*) complete my degree.


The focus I’m most interested in is child psychology/development. I would love to both teach and provide therapy for special needs kids or children with behavioral issues. The education portion appeals to me because I feel like parents are afraid of the stigma involving psychology and their children. Or maybe, they don’t realize their child might need some extra help. As an educator, I’d be automatically implanted into the child’s life and in the position to have an influence. I know how important this is, because it’s something I wish could have happened to me when I was a kid.


I wasn’t a troublemaker. I didn’t get horrific grades. I was pretty average, I suppose. But I went to a small school, and kids are cruel, as they are anywhere. And I just..couldn’t deal. I didn’t really know how to. Self esteem wasn’t exactly promoted in my household. My parents were either blind to it, didn’t think it mattered, or were too wrapped up in their failing marriage to see what was really going on. By 5th grade, I was really waiting for the chance to call for help. One afternoon in our daily religion class, I was given that chance. Pastor Simon gave us an assignment; write down something on a sheet of paper that really bothers you, but feel like you can’t tell anyone. I figured the main message was for him to tell us to go to God with our worries. I didn’t think anyone would be seeing what I wrote, so with my #2 pencil in hand, I feebly scrawled the words “ People make fun of me. I feel alone. No one cares.”


But Pastor Simon began walking around the room, reading what each of us had written on our sheets of paper. “ Susie, you’re worried about your math test tomorrow?” Susie, the smartest and most popular girl in the class, smiled and nodded mockingly. Pastor Simon gave her advice consisting of studying with her parents, and perhaps some prayer, and then moved on to the next student. Finally, he came to my desk. My face flushed and my mouth grew dry. He whispered to me. “ Have you told anyone about this?” I squeaked “ no.” He said nothing more and went on to the other students.


After religion class was over, I desperately wanted to go to the bathroom to throw some cold water on my face. That assignment had taken a lot out of me. As I approached my teacher’s desk, Pastor Simon was confronting him.


“ Do you know this has been going on? I’m concerned for her.” He told my teacher.


“ She’s just going to have to learn to deal with it.” the teacher responded nonchalantly.


Those words sting me to this day. I realize that everyone needs to grow a pair of balls if they want to get through life, and eventually, I did. Or rather, I ‘learned how to deal with it.’ To this day I have trouble expressing my feelings, my needs, or my reaction when someone has hurt or angered me. I was taught early on to keep it to myself. I love who I am, and wouldn’t change a thing. But sometimes, I wonder how different I would have been if maybe my teacher had reacted differently that day. Maybe if he had just reached out, or even called my parents to find out what was going on, things would have been different. But everything has it’s purpose- I want to be that difference in a child’s life when they feel like they have no one else to turn to. And I won’t wait for them to ask or cry for help. I will be the one person that understands them when they feel like they’re alone.


* Hopefully? You ask- where has that positive attitude gone? Well, it’s still here, but I got a response back from some of the Universities I was interested in that their psychology program is a day program. That’s a problem. I have a full time job. An established career, if you’d like to call it that. I need it, to pay my bills, and to pay tuition, because the federal government thinks I make too much in order to qualify for any sort of grant. Funny, because the last time I checked my bank account…. In short, here’s hoping that in the 2 years before I transfer, they’ve decided to branch out to adult/non traditional students a bit more.

4 comments:

  1. Hey. Thanks for following. It's totally awesome to "meet" in a way, someone who has the same goals. I hope things with school start looking up for you.

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  2. "I’ve been doing a lot of research on what I want to do once I (hopefully*) complete my degree." I hope to be in this position, come september too.

    As per words, could any more be said. I wish you the best life could offer. Go soar on your heart's desires-everything can happen.

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  3. I teared up a bit, well a little more than a bit, while reading this. I think everyone's had these feelings as a kid and it's wonderful that you want to be there to help them through!

    Btw you are a natural born story teller!

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  4. Yeah, sorry about the "boobs" on my blog.

    I mainly do that so that I can get hits from Google Image search. I sometimes find the boobs a bit off putting as well; that's why I've tried to tone down the level of skin a bit lately.

    The only thing that I hope is that it doesn't come off as sexist. I really don't do it for that reason. I'm actually married (and my wife sometimes helps me pick out the pictures, believe it or not). I have great respect for women.

    I also think that the human body is very natural and not something about which people need to make a huge deal. I think that, for example, it's more natural to show a woman or a guy in a swimsuit in a movie as it is for a guy to get shot or run over with a car. For some reason, in my culture (the United States), the one is frowned upon and the other is not.

    Thanks for commenting on my blog!

    As for your post, I agree. One of the things I hate worst in life is when someone blames failures in their current life on past hardships. Unless the stress was so bad that it cause some kind of a change (chemically) in their brains, I am under the opinion that most of the time it's only an excuse. EVERYONE gets teased.

    I am also following your blog now.

    Come visit again any time you wish! Thanks for your comments!

    http://futuretwits.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete