Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Changes Ahead

As I sit here I am listening to the swaying trees and swirling leaves rustle around outside. Grateful that the house is filled with light from the sunshine. Today truly feels like Fall. 

This windy change in weather makes me a bit apprehensive, however. While I might sound crazy -- I feel these distinct days are a sign of future changes in life. There have been several times in my life where the weather has changed suddenly (typically blustery and/or stormy) and I feel it in my core: something is not going to be the same in the near future. And it does. Most notably was my breakup with my first boyfriend in 2007. Around that time there was gusty, cold, dark and gray weather. As the wind blew all around me, I felt like life was chaotic just as the weather was then. My intuition was right in knowing life wasn't going to be the same.

Unlike that time, today is not dark and dreary but it feels bittersweet. While I could be wrong (I hope that I am), my intuition is alerting me again. Why? My boyfriend's father is getting a biopsy on a lung this afternoon. I feel somewhat hopeful but yet worried all at the same time. After what we have been through this summer, I know so well how fast everything can change. It's like sand. You can hold those minuscule particles tightly in the palm of your hand, but at some point a few start to fall through the cracks of your fingers... then a few more...That sense of security/stability can be gone within a matter of weeks. What can be so close to us can be gone ever so quickly. We have so little control on what happens to us and others. With that said, my heart is a bit heavy today.

On another note of change...

Here it is: I am thinking of a new direction in the education field. Several months ago, a doctor of speech pathology gave a presentation to a class a I was in. Ever since then I have not been able to stop thinking about that profession. Of course, these thoughts come at the end of my nearly completed Master's degree in Education (which has skyrocked my debt - just found out how much I owe the 'gov munt' yesterday)... 

The truth is, I feel like I don't belong in the mainstream public education classroom. After 2+ years of subbing, I have found that the mainstream room is confining. Don't get me wrong, I do love teaching and I love children but I lack passion in both in the public system. There is a lot of good that goes on, but I also see so many areas that aren't right. I also have found that I prefer to work with specific groups of children versus a variety. I think that is what led me to getting my ESOL endorsement. I discovered how much I enjoyed helping ELLs and see a real need to advocate for them. When I did my ESOL practicum, I felt a new sense of joy and passion for teaching, which I had nearly lost. I would love to my own ELL classroom and maybe someday I will. Next year if I am lucky.

Along with my love of ELL students, I have become curious about speech. Here's a fun fact about me: I am obsessed with people's mouths. My intermediate family knows this -- and I probably gained interest in mouths due to my sister (I love her cute way of talking, she has a unique emphasis on the /s/ and /ch/ sounds). When I watch TV or meet people anywhere, I am quite observant with how they talk and produce sounds. I love the different shapes of mouths, the way teeth can be arranged, and the physical aspect of how speech is created. 

Where does all this leave me then? Well, if I do decide to go for my Master's in SLP I will have to commit to about 3 years of schooling. I have looked at two universities (one being where I am going now) and there is much work to be done. It would challenge me in all kinds of ways. However, I have a decent amount of debt to pay as it is and more schooling = more debt. 

Since I am still in the deciding phase, I am doing what I can to get information from professionals to see if it is  something I want to pursue. I contacted a SLP that I know at a school and am hoping she will allow me to observe her. So.... we shall see where all this leads me. 

A near-future goal is to get some sort of full time job (even temporary, 6 months would be great) and work hard at paying down my debt. What kind of a job, who knows. I am hoping to sub as much as possible this year but am pretty sure this year will not be as lucrative. Basically, life is TBD. As usual though, right?! 

All I know is that my heart has changed towards education and I need to be enthusiastic about what I do. I want to help kids in some way shape or form. I'm glad that my feelings there haven't changed. I just hope that whatever I do, I am happy doing it because kids need as much positive input as possible. 

So, those are the thoughts on my mind on this Fall day. A heavy heart and a mind full of thoughts. I'm going to take a cue from the sunshine and have hope.


Lauren said...

Hi Angela,

Seems like you have a lot to think about. I'm sorry about your boyfriends father. I hope everything works out alright. I would love to chat about being an SLP. My email is if you want to email me some questions. It's a great profession, with so many different facets and areas to work in. One of the things I love most about my job is working with students for a focused short amount of time, then sending them back to class. I think I would go crazy dealing with the same kids and grade level all of the time. I also like that I get to follow the kids, some of the kids I work with will be "my kids" for 9 years, since I work at a K-8 school. That can sometimes be a good or bad thing. All and all I really do love my job. If you have any questions please feel free to ask away!


p.s. thanks for the info about Lupo. ;)

Elizabeth said...

Ang, what a great post. You so eloquently stated the difficult of change while also recognizing that it is inevitable. What a great new potential direction. I can definitely see you heading into becoming a SLP and wish Mom would have connected with you while she was visiting. You're incredibly financially smart so I know you'll pay down what you can---it will all fall into place. If it's meant to be, we both know the right doors will open fairly easily. Lots of love to you!

Angela said...

@ Lauren -- Thanks so much for your response! I appreciate you willing to talk with me. I'll be sending you an email very soon. :) I'm so happy to hear that you love your job -- that is very encouraging me to me.

@Elizabeth -- Thank you. I thought you'd be interested about my thoughts on a new career. haha Yeah I'll have to connect with your Mom one of these days. Lots of love to you too!!