November 7, 2001


It was test for me today. Yesterday was my 24th birthday and I celebrated as I contested I would my whole life… a night at the bar with some friends. I walked into class today almost embarrassed that I was still a bit hungover and wishing to be in bed. I realized then that my students "get it". They know what it is like to make very unwise, but fun decisions. They understand that I too am finding my way here, just as they are. In a lot of ways, we are all in the same position. We are all out of our element trying to find people to connect with and a place to call home. They were very good to me today, which means they were quiet. Thank God for the little things!


January 16, 2002


It is very hard to be an educator and to be 24 years old. Being that I am still technically in college, I feel as though my youth sustains, yet I have this enormous obligation to people younger than me. Those who seek knowledge. Part of me wants to revel in the fact that I have an independent and somewhat inconsequential life. However, another part pulls me to the lives of my students. I realize that none of them will ever truly know me as my friends and family do, but I believe they see in me something worth striving for. My success could be someone else’s inspiration. I have really never been in this position before and it is precarious. On one hand, I feel as though I am entitled to the life I have chosen for myself… Unmarried and childless at 24 provides me with a lot of freedom. On the other hand, I feel as though every action that I take, good or bad, will somehow reflect on the lives of my 45 students. If I fail them, will they succeed? If they fail me, will I succeed? And, for that matter, where is the middle ground? It is ever so hard to feel like a child when so many others count on you to be an adult.


January 18, 2002


My aunt once told me that I have a sad soul. Not an old soul, like normal people, but a sad soul. The comment struck me as odd and I have grappled with it for some time now. I recently asked a friend what he thought and his only reply was "life is harder for you, you make it harder". Another comment that struck me as odd. I believe that happiness lies in places for all of us that we could never imagine. My inner sadness has pushed me to choices and places I never knew I could identify with. A person I could never know. A life I couldn’t conceive before this. Being alone has afforded me a level of loneliness that, I believe, everyone should experience. For when you truly feel alone, then and only then, can you understand the importance and impact the love others bestow upon you. So, do I have sad soul? Maybe. Is life harder for me? Maybe. But, I do the best I can and if that means having a melancholy soul, then that’s okay. I like my life.


February 6, 2002


I thought today was the day before Valentine’s Day. I went to class with heart shaped candy and plans to wallow my way through another love holiday. Too bad I was a week early! I understand why my students think I am crazy. What a moron! Needless to say, we ate chocolate and finished a lecture. Then they went home and told their roommates what an ass they have for an English teacher. It is a damn good thing I know how to laugh at myself.


March 22, 2002

I was at home this week for my aunt’s funeral and my mind kept coming back to my classroom. The fact that I was missing two days of teaching was stressing me out because I felt as though I was putting all of my students behind. This was a time when I should have been seriously grieving, but I wasn’t focused. Does this mean that I have finally found what I am passionate about? Or is this yet another symptom of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (which I am certain I have!)? Could a career teaching fulfill me? That would be so cool! I could stop searching and wondering if I a doing the right thing. Dare to dream.


March 24, 2002


I had such a fun weekend! I spent Friday night in a small town bar watching midgets wrestle. It was awesome! I did feel a little bad for the little guys though. What a horrible life. They travel around and basically make spectacles of themselves for money. It must be very hard. I don’t thin I could handle that type of life. Then again, I make an ass of myself everyday and make no money for it. I should start charging people… "You just laughed at me? That will be 5 dollars, thank you!" Anyway, on Saturday I got to dance my rear off at a bar here in Fargo with some friends. I fell down in the parking lot trying to do cheerleader jumps; I need to learn that beer and flailing just don’t mix. I wonder when I will grow out of this clumsy stage…. Hmmm.


March 28, 2002


Home again and faced with, yet another, family "situation". Isn’t it strange how dehumanized language can get when people are trying to deny the truth about death? A broken hip may be the end of Gram’s life, which seems really surreal to me… She’s had and survived several heart attacks, broken bones, colds, failures, etc and a fall is going to kill her? It just doesn’t seem right. It just doesn’t make any sense. So, I take my position on the overnight hospital shift and work on my theory paper as I wait for the inevitable. Why is it always waiting? We wait for everything. I think that may be the most difficult part. End her suffering, don’t wait for her suffering to end her. My classes are discussing Euthanasia right now. The topic has always intrigued me, even more so in the past few years, I just keep asking myself "What would I want?". An end to the pain… that much I know. I just hope that Gram goes quickly, not because I get frustrated with her, but because I love her and think that her place is with Poppa and God. She deserves that much.


March 29, 2002


It is Good Friday and Gram is dead. Two ascensions in one day, that’s pretty good.