Peregrination

Noun: To Traverse on

A Journey…you know, it does

good things for the soul Continue reading “Peregrination”

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It’s Christmas?

Oh hey, I guess it’s December 25th today.

By western standards, that means it’s Christmas.

By Britta living in a primarily Buddhist country standards–it means it’s just another day. As in, oh hey, I work today!

Tis the season to be jolly?

Sure doesn’t feel like it! For someone who’s used to spending the holidays in a frigid climate, I can’t grasp my head around the fact that it’s December…the holiday season…that it’s almost the new year.

It all feels weird and I’m okay with that…because lately, in the last couple years, I’ve been finding the holiday season more stressful than anything. Because I love this country and don’t want to be anywhere else in the world.

Most Thais view Christmas as a western curiosity–so yes, we are having Christmas festivities at school today, and yes, there are decorations here and there (by here and there, I mean primarily at Tesco). But it feels different. It doesn’t have the same meaning here.

In Thailand, I’ll be celebrating Christmas (and Hanukkah, even though that ended a few weeks ago) with some of TESOL friends. That said, it WILL be different because it IS different. This is Continue reading “It’s Christmas?”

On Being a Teacher

Teaching is hard.

Teaching is exhausting.

As a brand new teacher with just one month of TESOL training under my belt, teaching is a HUGE learning curve.

I teach four Anuban (the Thai word for kindergarten) classes at my school–two Anuban 2 classes, each composed of 32 four and five year olds, and two Anuban 3 classes, each composed of 23 five and six year olds. Whereas some English teachers in Thailand have hundreds of students and see their classes only once or twice a week, I see my Anubans everyday. This is great because I really am getting to know them. I’m developing relationships with them and because they see me everyday, they are able to get used to me and my teaching style with a lot more ease than if they only saw me once a week. Given that the small kiddies thrive on stability, this is a major plus.

For all the benefits of seeing my kids everyday–oh and their cute, shiny faces definitely are a major plus–it also means that I constantly have to be keeping them on their toes. What works for one class doesn’t always work for another. What worked yesterday might not work today.

My Anuban 3s are quite a bit more mature than my Anuban 2s, so I am finding that I can push them a lot more, whereas I’ve been constantly finding that I need to simplify my lessons for my 2s. Each of my four classes is very different and they require different needs and different Continue reading “On Being a Teacher”

What are You Doing in this Room. Right Here. Right Now.

I’ve spent so much of my life afraid.

Afraid of everything–anything that was different, anything outside my comfort zone, new people and ideas.

Perhaps it came from my own social anxiety and perhaps there was something more….but if there’s anything, I’m a pro at being uncomfortable.

I always felt like there was something inherently different about myself. Not in the “you’re special” type of way but more that I didn’t connect with anyone. I still struggle to build meaningful relationships with people today.

I’ve always been exceptionally independent, but for some reason, growing up, I thought that was weird. I thought being an introvert was weird.

I couldn’t accept myself so I looked for someone else to latch on to.

Enter sexually and emotionally abusive ex-boyfriend of almost two years.

I had never been in a relationship before and I felt like I needed one more than anything in the world. I had my first kiss at 18, and I was kind of ashamed of that. I desired a reationship in high school and there were some potential suitors. But I was sooooo shy it just never happened.

So, when I saw ex-boyfriend in my orientation group at college in the fall of 2011, I decided to pursue him. He was attractive. Quiet. But I was curious.

I don’t regret my relationship with him. I wouldn’t be the person I am without it. He never meant to hurt me. We recently chatted after graduation and he told he felt terrible for what he Continue reading “What are You Doing in this Room. Right Here. Right Now.”