Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Mistakes and dead on horoscopes.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): A drunk dominatrix sidled up to me at a party and said, "Reverend, please absolve me of my sins." I'm not officially a priest, but in the spirit of fun and games I replied, "Why, my dear? Have you seen the error of your ways?" She spread her arms wide as she bowed, hissing like a serpent through a toothy smile. "Not at all, Reverend," she said. "I just want to clear the docket so I can go out and commit a slew of fresh, new sins with crazy abandon." I sprinkled a few drops of her Heineken on her head and channeled William Blake: "You'll never know what is enough unless you know what is more than enough. The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom. If the fool would persist in her folly she would become wise." And now, Scorpio, I'm channeling the same blessing for you.
Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

I trying to figure it out.

How can I really listen to my students?
How can I learn to understand them?

I struggle since as a substitute I must come in everyday completely new and without knowing the students well. I have to make split second decisions, take first impressions as all I know, and sometimes, well probably more often than not, mess up. I think it is crazy. I mean here I am a total stranger with sometimes only some notes from a teacher deciding how a child's day will go. They have to adjust to me and I have to adjust to them. I find my patience is tested a lot and I never realized that I can be so critical. I'm trying to understand how to be a better substitute teacher. One that is respected and listened to but also one that does not judge. I supposed it is difficult to do. Since as a sub, I am forever trying to gain control. I never get a chance to develop a real relationship with the students. And I am forever feeling empty. Always beginning and always ending. Constantly in flux...Maybe I understand Buddhism better than I thought!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Seven more days

And this face turns 29! So much has happened. So much will happen. I feel ready for some changes, new good habits to acquire since so many old bad habits have died. I don't know how I feel about being almost 30 and I don't know how I feel about this picture. She looks like a happy girl. There are some new lines that I notice on the face. She isn't exactly like the person I imagine in my head but she's nice. I wonder how the rest of the world sees her. I hope she loves her life. I know I've finally started loving her!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Sometimes I wish I was a French Buddhist.

Some days are truly awful.

And I wish I didn't feel so much, reveal so much, understood impermanence, and was not so ruled by my emotions.
I don't usually complain but these are things making me feel awful today:

overdue student loans

health insurance ending soon

no money--maybe 13 dollars, right now.

missing friends or not hearing from people

feeling fat and receiving my driver's license in the mail with a picture that makes me look like a puffy chipmunk

getting lost for an hour while trying to drop off my brother

feeling like I'm a professional babysitter not a teacher

feeling like I'll never move out again

stupid stuff from the past

letting all these things bother me and not quite knowing how to fix them or feel better

ten days to my birthday and feeling very low

complaining about trivial things while "real issues" are all around us in the world


As I was driving,

I realized a metaphor for my life. Construction is always going on somewhere.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

It's like riding a bicycle.

After a break from subbing, I went back today to a first grade class. It also was a half day so I was only there for 3 and 1/2 hours. It went pretty well. Once again there were questions about where their regular teacher is, the issue of pronouncing the names correctly, and the millions of helpful comments like "We do it this way, not that way." Overall, my confidence in my teaching returned. But I realized several things today. 1) Children move A LOT! They can't seem to sit still or stay quiet for too long. My brother would probably say the same thing about me. I don't know why but I am always amazed by this discovery. 2) I still cannot believe that I do something that requires me to start over, be brand new, have a first day everyday! I've always thought of myself as shy. This comes and goes. In college and a few years after, I was my most confident. But events that happened nearly two years ago still shake me from time to time and I begin to revert to the quiet timid Hillary. I am in awe of myself that I am able to be a sub and not be afraid. Even with the awful Middle schoolers, I was not afraid, just mad. This makes me so proud of myself and also completely blogged! It is fascinating when you discover things about yourself that you never knew. I'm beginning to understand that I will have a lifelong puzzle to work on...myself.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Tangled up in blue.

Like light shined through blue glass, I am calm and peaceful today. All frustration, angry, and hate has melted away in the morning sun. I am breathing and ready for a new day.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

I can't even think of a title, I'm so angry.

I was in middle school during 1990 to about 1993. I hated it. I felt like I didn't belong anywhere, I was trapped in a place I couldn't get out of, that the only thing that mattered was if boys liked you or not (which they didn't, I wouldn't be "liked" until 9th grade) or that this was hell on earth. And in the first time in over ten years, I had the pleasure of visiting this hell once again. I subbed for a dear friend, Jacob, who teaches art at a middle school and I seriously thought I would die. I screamed, I shouted, I did the whole "i'm a cool lady" routine and all I discovered was that I pretty much hate, yes HATE, the 11-21 demographic of our world, too much attitude. Ladies and gentlemen, I was beaten to a bloody pulp! Yes, I never have been that girl. The girl that the tough kids, cool kids, whatever kids like. I have a baby face and am totally a white girl. Therefore, everyone, regardless of age, thinks I'm "not down with it." This pisses me off to no end. But, what bugs me more is that this stupid segway into evilville aka Middle School has gotten me this upset. That I feel the need to even respond this horrible day or to just acknowledge that I was in Middle School. I'm done. I'll be angry the rest of the night and then tomorrow I will wake up, hopefully after 9 not 5:30am like this morning, and have forgotten all this mess. Cause after all I've got attitude!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

I hate teaching...well not really.

Today was insane. I subbed in a fourth grade classroom. This is the oldest group of kids I've dealt with ever...til tomorrow and I sub for a friend at a MIDDLE SCHOOL!!! But back to today. These children had spunk and a lot of it. I don't think I was that feisty in fourth grade, I'm not even sure I'm that feisty now! I feel exhausted but also slightly satisfied. Satisfied since I found out my "teacher stare" transcends age groups. Not only can I tell a kindergartener I mean serious business with my eyes but I can make fourth graders stop cold. So much power. I'm sure those who have never seen me teach can hardly believe that meek and mild Hillary can turn into bold and controlling Miss Thoren! I feel like Clark Kent and Superman!

Monday, October 1, 2007