I have an internal struggle going on inside of me.
A battle between the old LA Tiffany vs. the new "Profesor" Tiffany.
I come home every night and someone asks, "So how was work?"
The old LA Tiffany quickly responds: "Eh, okay I guess. Nothing special."
But the new "Profesor" Tiffany believes otherwise. Class WAS something special.
I can't count the numbers of times growing up that I looked at one of my teachers and thought: "Why in the HELL are they doing THIS?" or "Never in my life would I EVER want to be a teacher, they make practically nothing!"
Where did I get these insane ideas?
Oh wait, that's right. Society! Thanks a lot society, you've taught us well. Taught us that mere monetary accomplishments are the only accomplishments acceptable. Taught us to value money over intelligence. Taught us to look down upon the people that inspire us to look up.
I feel stupid when family or friends ask me what I'm up to these days, and I know exactly what they're thinking when they get the answer. I almost feel ashamed to let them in on the truth.
"So...you think you'll be teaching, like, forever?"
"Cool...so when are you going to come back to the states and get, ya'know, a real job?"
"How much do you make?"
Isn't that silly? Deep down I know I've got nothing to be ashamed of. Damnit! I should feel ashamed of myself for allowing myself to feel ashamed! It's time to let go of the old LA Tiffany and embrace the new.
So the next time someone decides to question/belittle me about my job, I just hope they have taken a look at this:
- I can make someone feel smarter than they've ever felt in their entire lives, or dumber than a rock. The deciding factor is whether they give me their best.
- I can motivate kids to stand out in class and speak their mind, regardless of their peer's nasty looks or witty comments.
- I can make parents teary-eyed the second they see their child utter "Hello, how are you?"
- I can make doctors, lawyers, and architects blush bright red when they pronounce the word "hamburger" wrong, or make them glow uncontrollably with pride from something as simple as winning Preposition Tic-Tac-Toe.
- I can inspire recently laid-off workers to return to interviews with confidence in their English-speaking skills.
- I have the power to make someone speak a completely foreign language, just by saying "Hi, I'm your professor, Tiffany."
That's a damn good feeling.