Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Artistic License

Artistic License



My Mom decreed me "diffident." My friends called me "creative." My Nana, although she never employed the word "karma," said she hoped God visited upon me in later years that which I dished out to my family.

High school - where insecure teens have the chance to try on different suits of armor to determine which might fit when they join the jousting in "real" life - proved to be a minimal struggle for me. I was good in the "humanities" - English, History, Languages - and I had a handle on the human element, as well.

Not to give myself props, as my cherubs would say, but in high school I made a subconscious decision to shelve my insecurities and embrace the moment. I tended toward the "free spirit" element, but my best friend was captain of the drill team; I wrote poetry and fell in love more than once with Eric Clapton, but dated the son of a Jewish dentist.

Part of the reason, I think, for my teenage comfort level is that no one told me that I was supposed to be "popular." I was, thankfully, clueless on that score. So I spent minimal moments wondering why what one of my buds termed the "Beautiful People" wanted everyone to love them just a little bit more than everyone else.

High school became a smorgasbord for me - of emotions, of experiences, of, essentially, imminent domain. I claimed the space I occupied at any given moment, and was comfortable enough, I guess, to move on to other territory when I felt like it.

High school is, of course, so much better the second time around. Honestly, I'm unsure a lot the time, but as one of my teacher friends likes to say, "You're older, you're wiser. Just don't let the little people know that you're afraid."

I'm in my 18th year of revisiting my "high school experience." I recently extended my tour of duty for another five years. Don't quite know where I'm headed, but I sure am enjoying the ride.

7 comments:

Life with Kaishon said...

I love how you write : )
I love your Nana : )
So funny!

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

So did you get the dish back your Nana mentioned?

I wouldn't go back to high school unless it saved a life. I hated it! Of course, you're working there so it's all different. ;)

dkzody said...

I liked high school while I was a student, and I liked it as a teacher. I would tell my students, this isn't the rest of your life; it's only FOUR years, then it's over. Well, for me it was 21 after the four!

Tracy P. said...

"I made a subconscious decision to shelve my insecurities and embrace the moment."

What a huge, huge gift. How cool that you are in a position to pass it along every chance you get. Love it!!

carma said...

I wish I had been as wise as you in high school so my self-consciousness wouldn't have ruined most things for me :-( You have such a zest for life I bet your students love you :)

Lucy said...

Being happy in your own skin is a great thing and to have that in High School, wow! Glad you are still enjoying teaching, so many lose that gift early. Keep enjoying!!

Laura Ellenburg's EDM 310 Class Blog said...

I very much enjoyed reading this post! At nineteen, I have been out of high school for only two years, so I enjoyed reading about your perspective from later in life looking back at your high school experience. I do agree that high school is the time where "insecure teens have the chance to try on different suits of armor to determine which might fit when they join the jousting in 'real' life." I tried many different roles in the safety of high school trying to find my niche in society, just as your students are doing now. I do not think that high school would be better the second time around, but I'm not willing to try it a second time. I served my four years, and I never plan on going back. However, I do admire you for teaching at the high school level. Congratulations on extending your "tour of duty!"

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