Thursday, March 23, 2006

Shifting from the Edge

Teetering on the cliff isn't the list bit inspiring - only nerve-wrecking. I am happy to say that just in the past week my ability to really judge professional priorities according to my interest has been much better. The opportunities are endless and as much as I need variety, there is still the danger of taking on too much out of fear of getting bored.

I spoke about my father in my last post, and the bond we had. We shared an innate understanding of the creative, abstract element. Dad was a brilliant man but was too full of anxiety and uncertainty about his talents that he did not pursue teaching work and other outlets for his many gifts. He wrote newsletters for churches, taught Bible classes and wrote funny poems all of which he received recognition and praise for but he was a frustrated man. The daily job he had was a grind and made him unhappy.

I have always feared of being the Ms. Almost in life, partly because I also shared with my father paralyzing anxiety and uncertainty at the most inopportune times. Over the years I have made great strides to eradicate these feelings. I'm not brilliant but I know I have the talent in the fields I enjoy working in.

What I teach students is that they will always be a work-in-progress. I have told students how old I am and they look at me as if it is amazing I am still alive; I also tell them that down the road they will have moments when they wonder if what they are doing is really what they want, they will want (and should) try other paths, other careers, and to not be surprised that at 40 or 50 they are thinking about still trying other things.

The search for fulfillment is ongoing; our needs constantly change. That said, it is equally important to know that in order to succeed in obtaining a goal you need to be organized and focused.

The past five years have been very difficult on many levels. I have finally moved away from that proverbial cliff onto more level ground. It doesn't have to be safer ground, just more level.

2 comments:

Gareth said...

It's a pit that noone ever gave me the work in progress lecture, otherwise I may have stopped thinking of myself as a failure much sooner than I actually did.

Nancy Kersey said...

I'm sorry too, Gareth.

I enjoy working with what is termed the "under served" school population and that simply means Youths-At-Risk or youths with emotional problems. I use writing and drama to draw them out and get them to express their frustrations.

In students, the lack of self-worth is the most common problem I encounter as a teacher.