Sunday, June 1, 2008

Art Blog: Defining Moments

It is really happening. I have finished two applications. I have sent the stuff, done my online application thingys, and asked (begged) people for references. I am on a roll now.
I am still feeling very confused and disoriented. Leaving a comfort zone is not easy. However, I am not going to let these moments of anxiety lead me astray. My new mantra is “It will be OK Sheree; it will be OK.” In fact, I am determined to stay the course. I need to move on. I will move on.
Thoughts are racing. I am trying to deal with this in a controlled manner. I am reliving my past to see my future. This is when I thought about “defining moments”. When I lived in Detroit, I thought about moving away. I kicked the dirt and thought about it for years. Getting laid off from my college teaching jobs put the fire under my butt. I was destitute and working as a waitress at Casa Lupita Mexican Restaurant. Holy Crap. I had an M.F.A. and I was serving tacos to business men. The horror!
I had a defining moment that came in the form of a near tragic auto accident. I was in my brand new truck. I was on I-94. I hit an ice patch and started to spin. I watched the steering wheel spin back and forth and back and forth. As I held my hands up in the air knowing I was helpless, I made a promise. As my truck spun around the expressway, I vowed “If I get out of this alive, I am moving to Florida!” A moment after this thought, I hit a snow bank. No damage. Still alive. Started to plan the move.
This time is different, but just as effective. This week I was walking down the hall of my school and redirected a high school student (politely). He got up in my face so close I could feel the spit. I will always remember the fire in his eyes as he said:
“You p*ssy *ss who*e f*ckin white cracker b*tch get out a my face! You p*ssy *ss who*e f*ckin white cracker b*tch get out a my face! Who do you think you are? You p*ssy *ss who*e f*ckin white cracker b*tch get out a my face!” “F*ck you! F*ck you!” over and over again.
I was totally shocked he didn’t hit me. (If any of you are offended, I apologize. However, this is the kind of thing I have had to listen to EVERY DAY for the past 15 years. Yes, some kids do talk this way.) This vicious banter continued the length of the hallway. As I listened to his tirade and looked at his evil expression, I thought “I don’t want to do this anymore.” The End


Sometimes it takes just one moment that gives
you the courage to change your life.
Have you ever had a defining moment?
I have.
I am SPINNING again.

3 comments:

gilda said...

I can see why you want to, NEED TO, leave. You have given enough. Do your supervisors know yet about your plans and what precipitated them?

Sheree Rensel said...

Gilda,
YEP. I do NEED to go. It is time. Yes, my administrators know and yes, they know why. There is a difference in philosopy. They say this is "OK" since it is a "manifestation of their handicap". I don't agree at all. I see my students in public all the time. When they are out, they express far more control. In fact, I told my boss "If a kid went off on a grocery clerk like he is ALLOWED to go off on me, he would be hauled out of the place by the ear!" The school is doing a diservice to these kids. It isn't OK to abuse staff or the public at-large. It just isn't. I have been working there a long time. I have rethought the ongoing interpretation of our students and say their behavior is a "manifestation of ALLOWING and making EXCUSES for kids to abuse staff".
I am over it.
I am worth much more.
S.

gilda said...

I am getting ready to revisit an earlier time, in the kind of studio I will be moving into. Either big and comfortable, like the one I have, or big and raw, or medium sized in eastern market. I am leaning towards big and raw, because that will bring the most challenge to my work. I havent decided yet.Will keep you appraised....