Ode to a Teacher

So it finally has dawned on me that this is not some weird practical joke.

An amazing man died this past week.

Alone in my car, I sang Seasons of Love from Rent for him.

How would we measure the life of such an amazing man?

Just like in the song, there is no better measure for him than love.

His love for life, volleyball, writing, drama, and teaching was something no one could miss.

He was someone that owned his permanent smile and wore it with pride.

He taught me what passion looked like and that it was not something to stifle for the sake of others.

Looking back, he showed me that I was not alone in my own love of writing at a pivotal time in my life.

During high school graduation, while he had not warned me before hand, he read one of my poems out loud for the audience. He did not do this maliciously, he did this because he believed and encouraged my writing.

He is a big reason why I am where I am right now.

His passion was not just for teaching but for learning. He did not stop at his education degree but was always looking for new volleyball drills, writing prompts, or thinking up his favourite movies and stories that he could turn into drama productions for the school.

Bringing new ideas into class and practice was his forte. I don’t know about his nerves or fears but he was always willing to try something and if it didn’t work, he moved on to the next new thing to try.

I admired his courage coming in to a new school to teach English and there was no shortage of complaints from typical high schoolers who thought they knew it all. That never seemed to phase him and he kept on learning and growing to be better at what he did.

There are so many things that I would have liked to say to him but I guess it is human nature to do this once someone is gone.

He taught me so much more than just what was on the curriculum and for that I can never thank him enough.

Thank you, Rick for giving so much of yourself to all your students.

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It’s okay to be single

I know I’m not the best person to say this since I’ve been married for over a year. I’m going to throw that out there right now.

However, I was single before being married.

And I did not love myself.

What’s brought this up is watching the movie How to be Single. I wasn’t expecting much. I’ve seen enough rom coms to expect the boy to get the girl, blah blah blah.

It was almost like a mini Love Actually with different couples connected but everyone with their own story of finding love, finding themselves or, in the case of Rebel Wilson, just being kick ass and totally cool with herself and her life.

For a rom com, thanks to Rebel Wilson’s brash honesty, it spoke very openly about how someone can change when they enter a relationship.

I was very lucky to find myself while in a relationship and had a boyfriend/husband who was very supportive of that. That is not always the case.

For Alice, it’s a completely different journey and one that was not easy. Every fear about being alone, every expectation about love and relationships are right there. Enter Joe, a guy on the complete opposite side of the spectrum. His fear of settling and different expectations of love and relationships are also very much right there on screen.
It’s great how this all flawlessly connects into this realistic, modern look at being single.

Don’t tell me your busy

If the first words out of your mouth when we meet is apologizing for how busy you are, I don’t want to hear it.

Not that I don’t know how busy you are. Not that I don’t appreciate how busy you are.

Tell me what you’ve been up to but you don’t have to equate that with being busy.

But if that is the first thing you say to me, this does not work as an apology.

It becomes your go to excuse.

Explaining how busy you are becomes your justification, a way to make yourself feel better.

It does not make you any less busy.

You will always be busy.

But it does not make you anymore likely in the future to make plans with me.

Busy becomes your get out of jail free card. Your admittance of “failure”.

It becomes a way of admitting guilt without actually trying to make it better.

And it will be your excuse a month from now, a year from now, 10 years from now.

Take busy out of your vocabulary.

Next time you say we’ll try to meet up, don’t add a “but” at the end.

Forget the “but I’m so busy” at the end. That is admitting right off the bat that you are going to fail. If those words cross your lips before you have even tried to make plans with me, you have failed before even trying.

You may feel better, but for me, I am stuck continuing to try while you have already failed.

Am I a writer

I write for a living.

I write for fun.

But am I a writer yet?

I don’t feel like I am and yet I have a problem trying to improve myself as a writer.

I finally took the time today to go through the MANY saved pins on my Pinterest Writing board. I love what I am finding.

Story outlines, resources, tips, encouragement, everything is there for me.

Yet, I cannot make myself use it.

I feel like I am starting in the middle of something. I do not feel like I’m on the Go space. I feel like there is so much more I have to go through before I am worthy of all this new gold mine of information. I feel like I have not dug far enough.

A shout out to the Eva Deverell and Lady Writers League (Eva Deverell: http://eadeverell.com The Lady Writers League: http://ladywritersleague.com). I just signed up for her emails and I already love her work to help writers flourish.

Her first emails asked these questions:

“Have you secretly LONGED to write a novel but didn’t know where to start?

Maybe you even had an idea, but as soon as you sat down to write, you found that you couldn’t transfer that idea onto the page?

Or perhaps you got partway through a novel and then realised something was wrong and you couldn’t figure out how to fix it?”

You are not alone, she says, and that has made me feel a little better.

So what is the solution to my problem?

Looking at why this is happening, many things come into play:

Fear of course is the biggest thing. Feeling lazy is another one.

Combine the both of them and it is a rather daunting task to look at the novels on my shelf and want to create one of my own.

I guess time and hardwork will tell.

The power of ‘can’t’

I’ve never pushed myself.

I’ve always been quick to give up.

I’ve always been quick to use the word can’t in place of won’t.

It’s easy to make that replacement.

I honestly don’t know the difference anymore.

I can’t say I’ve ever cared much for running marathons, maybe for the reason of thinking I’d never be better than the other girls in class.

I’m starting to realize that wasn’t the point. Being better than my past self should have been the point.

I don’t know why that didn’t sink in until now.

Is it too late to get better. Not because I’m getting older but because this attitude is so deeply ingrained that can I change it?

It’s going to be hard. It’s got to hurt. And I need to realize that.

Cry for help

This is my cry for help.

I post it here because I know none of my family will read it.

I don’t want them to know what is happening because I don’t think they would understand. I’ve heard it many times. Brush it off, grow up, you’re only doing it for attention.

I don’t want the attention.

I’m on the verge of tears but I don’t want to call anyone because I’m afraid of appearing weak or fragile.

I don’t want to be any of those things.

But I’m afraid of the person I’m becoming. I’m starting not to care. I’m starting to look at the world more negatively. I’m starting not feel numb.

I don’t want to be any of those things.

I have my amazing husband but I’m afraid if I bring these problems to him too much, he’ll get frustrated enough to leave. I don’t think I could survive that but I don’t want to break that easily. I never want to be that person. But I know I need him and I never want to lose him.

I find even sadder that I don’t trust him to stick around even though that is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard.

I don’t want to be emotionally dependent on him, either. My mental health should not solely be based on him. And I would never place that burden on him.

I don’t want to be a cynic, I don’t want to give up, I don’t think I ever would but I know there is something wrong and I don’t know how to fix it.

What am I doing so wrong in my life that I feel I have no one. If I was living my life right, wouldn’t I not have this problem?