Outside My Comfort Zone But Inside My Heart

My Spoken Word

Inside my bubble is cozy and warm. I am content and even more importantly, I feel safe. While I was growing up, my heart and my comfort zone took separate paths.

I have been fortunate enough to live within a community where most people are living the stereotypical American Dream. I grew up in a community where I went to a school that was well funded, full of committed teachers that taught because it was there passion not their job, and opportunities that were oozing. Traveling through life, I found that I took much of that for granted. I was wrapped up in the small things that were not going right; I missed out on all the big things that were. I might even go as far as to say I was sheltered.

My view on the world around me changed the day my friend asked me to go to a youth center in the inner city. If I am being honest, I had no idea what to expect. My friend explained that it was unlike anything I had experienced and to be prepared as it was outside my comfort zone. I expected the experience to be a couple feet outside my comfort zone, but it was more like a few miles.

Just 20 minutes away from my world, was a world I only saw in movies. We parked outside the center and I was afraid to get out of the car. We walked into the old, battered building. Little did I know that my heart would absorb the environment so much so that the walls of my comfort zone would shatter. It was as if I did not have a comfort zone at all. The girls played with my hair and talked to me about their lives. What was normal to them was unfathomable to me. What got me the most was the way they talked about their school.

The way those kids experienced school was directly opposite of what I endured. My heart broke for them. As I conversed with them for hours, an armed robbery took place across the street. Before, I would have had a panic attack. For a reason I still to this day am unaware of, I was more calm than most days. It was within that moment I knew this was my calling.

A career in a world that was miles outside my comfort zone sounded like suicide and misery to my brain but my heart was full. Somewhere along the way when my heart and my comfort zone took separate paths, my heart became the leader. My heart overpowered my head. It told me to go. It told me to be the teacher that these kids only heard about but never experienced. It told me to go make a difference.

This community was not somewhere I would want to grow up in, but it is a community I want to grow old in.

[At the top is a link to the spoken word I wrote about my understanding of what an inner city student feels about school. It’s this understanding that has stirred a passion for change in the education system.]

I Feel Called to a Career in Education, but I am Scared.

 

I’m called to a career where I won’t have a voice or a say in any decision or choice.

Teachers are guiding and forming the future, yet their salary is much less than someone stitching a suture.

I’m scared because in order to teach, I have to earn a degree. I will then drown in debt as deep as the sea.

My salary will barely allow me to pay off my debt. The debt that grows at the rate of a jet.

Don’t forget teachers have no say, even though they are the ones that interact with the students everyday.

No one will listen that there are too many standardized tests that cause too many young children to have anxiety fill their chest.

It’s no secret that there is too much pressure and depression is increasing, yet we choose to ignore and do nothing to make the rates start decreasing.

There are several issues within the realm of education followed by higher authority making bull shit justification.

The upper officials think cramming 40 students in a classroom is okay, but what about the kid that sits in the back of the class that goes unnoticed everyday?

With too many kids, the teacher can’t give every kid attention which leads to those kids getting frustrated, landing themselves in detention.

Or how about the fact that creativity is shamed while memorization is proclaimed.

Due to insufficient funds, art and music departments are getting cut. This leaves the kids who used art and music as an outlet in a rut.

We are teaching kids in a climate where multiple choice is the dominant, yet real life reflects quite the opposite.

Listen to my voice, Life is not multiple choice.

Education is supposed to be filled with color; it’s not black and white, yet we continue to act as if the system in place is right.

Somewhere along the line education formed into a business and as a student I’ve seen it firsthand as a witness.

The upper officials have no qualifications so maybe that’s why they have terrible justifications.

When I think of the world of education, I think of the word unfair. I look at the call of education I have almost as a dare.

Even though the education system resembles that of a slum, I’m shouting to the education world, “LOOK OUT! HERE I COME!”