Today, a former CM (corps member) shared out about the challenges she faced her first year teaching. She often told her students about her college glory days, but she would refer to those experiences as her “real life.” She treated her first year here in South Carolina as a sort of experiment – a bubble that would burst at the end of two years, at which point she’d return to her college town to her college friends and resume exactly where she’d left off. This mindset was detrimental to her students, who felt like their teacher wasn’t invested in them, and ultimately made her first year more difficult than it needed to be.
If someone hadn’t warned me about this, I’m confident that I would have made exactly the same mistake. In the 30 hours I’ve been here, I’m sure I’ve already referred to my “DC life,” dozens of times, mindlessly referencing friends or memories or the fact that I lived next door to the White House. “This will be so different from DC!” “I miss DC.” “I can’t wait to get to Atlanta so I can uber everywhere.” “Y’all don’t know what uber is?” “Can we go see the Peachoid?” “You haven’t watched House of Cards?” “Yeah, I lived like four blocks from the White House. It was chill.” AND I haven’t even bragged about my selfie with Joe (Biden) yet.
This post is basically just a reminder to myself to move forward. I live in South Carolina. I am a teacher. I don’t have a house or a job or anything tangible to prove this yet…but this is my life. My REAL LIFE. So I’m just going to keep saying this out loud to myself over and over again until it feels as real as it is. In the meantime however, I’m going to keep using banana pudding and corn bread as my daily servings of fruits and vegetables.