30 March 2013

Grown up vs. Mature...that is the question

I’ve been blogging for a year now.  It was a year and two days ago since I sent my Director this email with the subject line :Challenge Accepted::
Hi!  I would be honored to work for Bayan.  I look forward to the next few months of planning and then our future collaboration together.  Thank you so much!
On April 1st I told most of my people, on April 4th I posted my first blog on here.  Not a lot has changed in a year. 

Just kidding…

But seriously…

I was so nervous to move, but SO excited at the same time.  I knew that the new culture would be difficult and that I would miss people like crazy, but adventures are so amazing.  So a year in to the process (and 7+ months of living overseas) I am still excited for the journeys ahead.  I have a lot of fun things to look forward to, and in general keeping my eye on the prize. 

I do not have seniors for the next two weeks while they take their mock exams so I am planning on being the best damn teacher there is for my 9-11th graders.  2 less classes a day will definitely help with that.  At the end of this two weeks is our holiday too; these two weeks will fly by for sure.  Just like time always does when you are really looking forward to something.

Just kidding…

But seriously…

John asked me yesterday if I was to the point in my life that I was “done” growing up.  It was at brunch, so I am pretty sure my reaction sounded something like “phssshhhhhhh”.  However, it is a legit question.  When I look at my parents I think “wow, they have their shit together.  I wonder if I will ever be like them.”  When I look at my friends like Sara and Jamie who have amazing husbands, beautiful kids, I wonder “how the hell do they do it?  I can barely balance my coffee and muffin in one hand, let alone my life.”  

So then John and I had a conversation about growing up, or being “done”.  This was at brunch, so I mean, it was probably the most intellectual conversation we could have ever had, that neither of us my perfectly remember, but you know, I remember the main points. 

First of all, I hope I am never to the point where I stop learning.  I am a bit of a know-it-all (and ass kicker at Trivial Pursuit) but I know I really do not know it all.  I want to be a life-long learner.  I want to know more about politics and choose candidates not just for social views, but economic ones (my Dad just put his fist in the air a la Judd Nelson in Breakfast Club).  I want to know more about psychological happenings of children so I can better teach my current kids, and raise my future ones.  I want to embody the meaning of tolerance and be a good person to everyone, all the time.  I have a lot still left to learn!

Secondly, and this one is so weird for me to be saying, we have to remember to be silly.  Joan used to say that Minnesota was my kid zone because I got to hang out with kids younger than me and be on their level, instead of peers my own age and adults and be on theirs.  I have been pretty mature for my whole life.  I never enjoyed being silly, or foolish, not a huge fan of practical jokes, fart noises or general goofiness.  Apparently though, my silliness has exploded here.  However, it’s not new found silliness, but it is just that I now know that I do not have to be mature all of the time, and that a silliness is a good balance to have.  My birthday in Minnesota is evidence that my parents have shown me that you have to balance “grown up” with “silly” every now and then.  I am not going to call out our adventures, however, I hope when I am “grown up” Deanna and Joan are who I am like J 

When I teach my students I want them to learn the math.  I need them to know how to multiply, plug into equations and when to use the right equation.  I want them to be polite, engaged and use correct vocabulary and examples to support their conclusions.  I want them to be mature.  During break, I want them to run and scream and push each other on the soccer field.  We can’t expect them to be all work, all the time.  We can’t expect adults to be either.  The problem with adults, is that we consider a lot of what we do as work.  We have jobs (I love mine, some do not), we run errands to pay bills, grocery shop, take dry cleaning (I do not, but that is what Bahrain delivery is for), and we clean the house and keep everything in order (I do not, but I should).  I have lived my life before where this consumes my time and it feels like you are working all the time.  Being here, I have realized, silliness is needed and should be encouraged.  This is a statement that I would have never said 3-4 years ago. 

So now, don’t expect me to like costume parties, or think that spongebob is funny,  but take pictures with a balloon hat?  Ok I’ll do that now.  So by making this discovery about myself and life in general, does that make me a grown up?  Or just freaking awesome?

Just kidding…

But Seriously…

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