Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Drudgery of Life...

It's been quite a while since I've posted anything, and honestly, it's because I didn't feel like I really knew what to say. The opportunities I spoke of towards the end of my last post, "Much Required" seemed small and insignificant every time I tried to write them.

I did try to write them several times. My posts all began something like this:
"The way I see it, if you try to reach a certain goal and it is in the will of God, He'll make sure you have opportunities in place to get you there. Upon returning to UNC in the fall, all of the students who had studied abroad were required to attend a "re-entry" session where we talked about our experiences. It was there that I discovered the possibility of international teaching, or teaching abroad. Immediately, I was drawn to this path for my future. After giving it some thought and prayer, I met up with an adviser about it and started setting my educational path to lead to this goal. To fall right in line with that, I soon got a job teaching in an after school program at an elementary school nearby. I loved it so much, and each and every one of my kiddos meant the world to me. I was excited to see where this would all lead me."

While all that is great, and I had been wanting to share that information with everyone, it hardly seemed sufficient for a blog post (especially when you consider the nature of some of my other posts). So I never posted about it.

I ended up falling back into the drudgery of life in the fall semester. I went to classes, went to my jobs (I also worked at Kohl's), went to church, and went through the motions. It's not like I was depressed or anything; I just wanted so much more out of life. I wanted to squeeze it and get every little drop of wonderfulness out of it that I possibly could. But that wasn't happening.

I felt really alone and empty too. I had given up what I once saw as the most meaningful relationship in my life because I felt like it was what God wanted, and frankly, I found myself pretty friendless. See, I started dating that guy about two months after I first moved to Greeley, so he and his family were really the only people I spent time with up here. I had no close friends at school. And people I knew from church are sprinkled across Northern Colorado. So while I was diving into God, I still felt alone and lacking.

But the semester winded down. I met with advisers about classes to take in the spring, met with my honors adviser to make sure I was staying on track with the program, and signed up for a slew of English major classes that I was sure would eat me alive. My boss offered me a promotion for the next semester from "children's activity leader" to "children's activity director" meaning that instead of showing up and teaching material someone else gave me, I would plan and write the curriculum, schedule the activity leaders, and basically just run the show. I accepted and quit my job at Kohl's.

And then I went home for the holidays. Winter break was so uneventful that it's really all just a blur in my memories, even though it was only a short five months ago. There was one thing I had to make sure to do though: sign up for an honors class. So I pulled out the piece of paper I had scribbled on. "Confluence of Cultures." It sounded interesting. So I went to register for it. I was surprised when the system gave me an error message saying I needed instructor approval. I emailed the professor asking him about it, and he responded that he limits the number of students in the class by requiring that students apply with one paragraph consenting to take on the course work and one paragraph describing why they are interested in the course. So I checked out the syllabus he sent, which entailed one book after another and one paper after another, a couple big projects, several guest speakers, several documentaries, and a two hour a week commitment to Soliya (which I found to be a sort of video conference call online). I replied to his email with the paragraphs and got accepted to the class. I didn't think much of it; it was just a class that met the requirements. But it ended up being so much more...

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