Do You “Get It”?

4 Nov

I’m not exactly comfortable with blogging, yet lately it is something I feel like doing often. I have been realizing many things not only about myself but also about others that have been greatly affected me in ways both professionally and personally.

I am starting to realize that some people “get it”. I am not exactly sure what this “it” is, but it definitely shows through in certain people. The more education classes I have the more I realize that most people just do not get “it”. What is this “it”? It could maybe take on the word oppression. It could represent a greater understanding of people, and of life. It could represent this generation of teachers, and how we need to start acting differently and changing things before we can progressively move ahead. This “it” is something I see in my peers, and I would like to say I can see in myself. This “it” separates the teachers from the pre-service teachers. “It” is what I want to be reflected in every aspect of my life.

This is really confusing, and the reason it is so confusing is that I really don’t even understand it myself, I can just see it. Mostly what I see is that a lot of my peers do not have “it”. My first experience with this was over the course of my second year of University. I wrote a blog about my roommate and oppression, and for the first time I not only was starting to realize that some people don’t have “it” but also realized that I was starting to understand “it”.

It’s happening again. I obviously understand that racism is everywhere, as well as oppression, but the more I meet new people and get involved, especially within the education faculty, I am finding that oppression really takes on different roles. I am used to feeling oppressed for being Aboriginal. It’s not a good thing, but I am very used to the feeling. Writing a paper on oppression last year was the single most important assignment I have ever done in my life. By defining what I thought oppression was I really found a way to recognize it in my life.

Currently I am starting to understand different kinds of oppression. The voting that has taken place within the University has had a real impact on me, and has helped define numerous aspects in my life. I am finding that many of the people around me have taken a definite stance on this topic and by doing so they are affecting others around them. Today someone told me, “Did you see that girl right there? She did a presentation in our class about CFS, and ever since then I haven’t been able to have any respect for her, just knowing that she voted yes.” This has stuck with me all day. It is driving me nuts. I never said anything; it is another one of those situations where I couldn’t decide whether to say something or not. I chose not to say something because I knew that by expressing my opinion to this individual it would change our relationship, and I would have a difficult time in the future as I spend a lot of time with this person due to extra curricular activities. It took me a while to realize the feeling I had was so similar to when I don’t say something concerning an Aboriginal topic. It is very tough listening to comments like this, because people’s opinions are their own and I just don’t find it very fair to judge them on that. Knowing someone voted yes in the referendum should not change an opinion of anyone. I have a bunch of friends who felt strongly on this referendum and on both sides of the vote, and they have never once made me feel like if I didn’t agree with them our relationship would change.

It’s very frustrating.

What’s more frustrating is when I am in a situation where I feel uncomfortable like this; the person making me uncomfortable is usually a teacher.

Over the last two weeks a bunch of things just seem to be happening at once, and I have felt like I have been overwhelmed with frustrations. My thoughts have been extremely focused on the referendum, and really not so much with the referendum itself but the actions taken regarding the referendum. Another thing that has been brought to my attention is people’s thoughts on addiction. I am in a position where addiction’s haven’t really affected my life directly, but has affected people who are extremely close to me. Seeing addiction in a person, and how it has affected the lives of those around me has made me understand a lot of things about addiction. Saying that “getting rid of alcohol” would make the world a better place seems to be an empty statement filled with ignorance. Who are we to judge whether a person is “bad” or “good” based upon the addictions that have affected their lives.

Back to this concept of “it”. I find the people who really understand it are those that have been affected by some form of oppression. This first hand effect gives them a different understanding, and I really can see it in different people. Wanting to change things seems to be a huge factor. I constantly want to change things, make them better, and find ways to make things more efficient. I find things that are wrong very easily, and I would like to think its because I can put myself in the positions of others. I find the more I go along in education the more I cling to certain people, and the people I can really trust and tell things are these people who “get it”. My closest friends seem to “get it” and I feel like I can talk with them. I am fortunate enough to be very close with my best friend, who lets me vent to her my frustrations, but at the same time understands where I am coming from. I find her to be one of the biggest supports in my life, and by having her, as well as other friends who I trust completely, I feel like I don’t have to stand alone all the time.

I find myself drifting away from the people who “don’t get it”, I easily become frustrated with speaking with them and I don’t connect in the same way. This frustrates me greatly because I don’t think that is very fair of me. For the last two weeks I haven’t spoken very much with one of my closest friends because she didn’t understand why I have been upset. This hasn’t been fair of me, and I recognize it and am working on it… but at the same time I have also become closer with some people over the past couple of weeks. I connect better with people who are also in education; it makes sense because they have the same aspiration as me. I want to surround myself with these people because I want to learn as much from them as possible. Surrounding myself with these people who “get it” seem to make me understand people more in general.

I ramble on forever, and it probably doesn’t make any sense, but I feel the need to collect my thoughts into sentences. Typing it out seems to give my thought some substance and help me make more sense of it.

Reflecting is a big part of teaching right?

That’s all I have for now,
Goodnight.

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One Response to “Do You “Get It”?”

  1. Dean Shareski November 5, 2010 at 3:00 am #

    Reflection is greatly important. I”m convinced that if you continue to explore your practice and efforts, you’ll have a built in model for improvement. Be open to ideas, criticism and actively seek the wisdom of others.

    All the best.

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