Saturday, December 16, 2006

back home again in Indiana...

Well, I've made it through my first semester as a teacher. And I made it back to Indiana.

My winter break began by shipping the kids on home Thursday at 12:30 (when the principal came on the announcements and said that there were no after school activities and all students needed to leave the building I actually laughed out loud. Those kids wouldn't have left faster if the building was actually on fire). After the kiddos ran off we had professional development, something I'm not going to discuss since I want to stay in the holiday spirit. Friday I rushed like crazy to get my winter check-out list done... hi, welcome back to my RA days... and rushed off to the airport to catch a plane to Indiana.

Problem with catching a flight to Indiana is you have to fly through Chicago. Problem with flying through Chicago? Their radar went down. My flight out of Houston was an hour late and my flight out of Chicago was two and a half hours late. Besides the fact that I went the wrong way when I got of the plane at O'Hare and ended up walking basically the entire airport, the whole travel thing didn't go so badly. All of this scheming and traveling was perpetrated to surprise my dear friend and former college roommate Jamie for her graduation. And boy was she surprised. She called me when my friends and I were on the way to her apartment. I kept her talking and then her roommate let me in and I walked into her bedroom still on the phone with her. Yes, I am sneaky.

Now, I'm sitting at good 'ol Bloomington Bagel killing time until I go pick up former roommate number 2 and head over for Jamie's graduation. It is so weird to think I was doing this whole cap and gown thing just seven months ago. It simply feels so long ago. I'm now in charge of children. I'm now a working adult. I'm not totally turned around and passionately committed to the education movement. I love where life takes you. It's so cool.

All of my buddies have come back for the weekend so I'm getting the chance to catch up with a lot of friends I've sadly neglected throughout my whole teacher indoctrination program. Hopefully I can table the up-speak for a bit and act like a normal person (no promises though). Being here just reminds me of how lucky I am. Not only did I grow up in a stable and safe environment, but I had the foresight to see that this place was a possibility for me. I spent four years at a school that my kids can't even fathom. I mean really, most of them can't see to next week, let alone college. The one's who can see to college don't really see out of state or anything more than community college as an option. From the time I was in the seventh grade I knew I wanted to leave Kansas and go out into the world. How different would my life be if I hadn't looked at the world like that? If I had looked at it the way my kids do, all closed in and limited? I want my students to see there is endless possibility in their futures. I want them to know that IU or any school of their choosing can and should be a possibility for them. They should be able to choose to stay in Denver Harbor, not be forced to stay because they see no other future. I just have to figure out how to get them to see all of this.

Perhaps some grand idea will come to me as I schmooze with old friends and IU folks. Maybe the answer is closer than I think. Either way, it's cold and I'm sipping on a warm cup of coffee in a place that definitely feels like home. If good ideas and hope can't come to me here then they can't come anywhere.

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