Wednesday, December 21, 2011

My journey to teaching

     College hasn't been the easiest of roads. I tend to be a slightly indecisive person, and choosing the perfect university proved to be just another hard decision to make. Once in college, I had to transfer after three semesters to a commuter school located closer to home which really threw a wrench in EVERYTHING. I had to change my major, as the new college didn't have my major from the last college, and start new all over again. I missed my old college more and more. As I sat through my new classes, the more I found myself thinking about my old life. I missed my sorority, my friends, my old campus, and my old routine. As they say, time heals all. And it really does. I slowly began to make new friends and accept my new surroundings (it wouldn't have taken so long if I hadn't been so determined not to like my new college). I began to actually like where the journey was taking me, and no one was as surprised as myself.
     What was I going to do now that I transferred? Well now that so many of my new found interests were out the window (sorority, friends, activities, clubs, intramural sports etc) I realized I had to go back to the basics. What was it I always dreamed of doing before I became distracted with all the glitter of my old university? Teaching.
     Everyone has their own story of why they chose teaching. Most commonly, I hear "I just really love kids!" Which is fine. It really is. To be in this business, a liking of kids is really a must. But my story is a little different. I was raised by a stay at home mother and a father who loved her and worked harder than any other dad I ever knew. I had the dream life with the white picket fence. It was wonderful. School was fun, and coming home to a mother who always had cookies coming right out of the oven was just another Monday afternoon. Life for me was smooth sailing, at least all the way up to 3rd grade. In 3rd grade, I hit a few road blocks. They came in the form of bad grades... really ugly, bad grades. My parents didn't understand what was wrong, and I had no clue what it meant to have to work for something. My 3rd grade teacher, let's say her name is Ms. Jones, lit a fire under my rear, and at first I wasn't so sure what to do about it.
    That's when I realized I had just been scooting by on my little spoiled, ruffly butt. After recovering from temporary shock (you mean I'm not perfect?) I began working harder and smarter. With each new success, I would see Ms. Jones smiling at me, as if say "I knew you could do it...YOU just needed to know you could do it."
    After 3rd grade, I went on to be a very successful student, but I never ran across another teacher that impacted me like Ms. Jones. I realized that what she did for me changed my outlook on school and life, and that I wanted to one day have a significant impact on children as well. I do not know who I would have become if I wouldn't have gotten that "tough love" (which was always quickly followed with a hug and a smile), that I received from Ms. Jones. She literally made me who I am today, and for that I will always be thankful.

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