Thursday, September 22, 2011

A Personal Interlude

To begin, I would like to apologize for the neglect that this blog has been experiencing since my last post back in August.  A number of issues are responsible for this:
 I found that particular post to be a rather emotional one and hard to get past.  I find that it is sometimes difficult to visit that particular building and sometimes need time to pass in order to move forward in my thoughts and feelings regarding it.  I do want to say thank you to everybody who commented on the piece.  Your thoughts and contributions are meaningful to me and I just wanted to thank you for sharing.  It is much appreciated.
I have also, recently, regained employment as a teacher and have been jumping in feet first ever since.  I was notified on Labour Day of my new assignment and, while it is only a half-time position, I have been feeling like I am running to catch up.  I am not complaining here, despite this.  I am teaching Planning 10, a course that I consider to be very, very important.  I am very much convinced that the Drug & Alcohol Awareness, Violence prevention & Suicide Awareness are incredibly important.  Healthy Relationships and sexual decision-making are must-knows.  Our students are going to experiment, they are going to try things (it's called growing up), we need to make them aware of the dangers and help promote good decision-making. 
In addition, I am teaching Psychology 11 this year, a course that I have never even looked at before.  I am very excited by this one, I was upfront with my students that I did not know it all with it.  I would be learning with them in a way that was new to me and I could barely contain my excitement about it.
The downside of this, of course, is that I have not been on this blog very much.  I hope to get back into my passions here, but I might be inconsistent.  I truly admire those folks who can read and learn and absorb and synthesize quickly and move forward.  Sadly, I am not always one of them.  Sometimes I can read something, or engage in a discussion that I can absorb immediately and build upon.  Sometimes I have trouble engaging the work, needing to start and restart constantly before anything sinks in.  I am in that place right now with the Aboriginal Education work.  Partly, this is a result of my immersion into schoolwork again and the chaos of start-up (I just scrapped my year plans and am re-starting them), partly, I am not having any ideas that I feel confident to write about.  Or the writing is not very good, even by my own modest efforts.  I once promised a post about Sports mascots, in light of one of my former schools usage of a Chief's head as a logo, and the return to Chilliwack, BC of the Chilliwack Chiefs whose logo I notice resembles a Chief's head in headdress.  That post has not come together in a form that is acceptable to me.
I have also been running the BCTF Aboriginal Education Association blog, which has receiving some of my attention of late, and ostensibly the newsletter for the PSA, which I have to get working on in preparation for the upcoming conference.  I am considering reprinting one or two of my posts in the newsletter, but I am struggling with the desire to maintain a separation of the two, lest I start to get a big head or something.  I have been worrying about that in relation to the other blog as well.  I have two articles from others to publish and I am thinking of doing one on the blog and the other in the newsletter, but I don't know yet which way it will go. 
My Teacher Inquiry Project is in waiting mode as we are applying for a new grant to continue forward with it.  We will be appearing at the AEA PSA Conference, Wellness and Our Environment, where we will be discussing where we are in the process and sort of holding an open forum to bring in stories from others.
On a personal note, I just wanted to say that I recently lost my dog, Amy.  Amy was a fifteen year old chocolate lab and knew how to get out of the yard, even when we would seal whatever break in the fence she would find.  She was slow and arthritic and would still break out and go down to the river to raid the dumped fish parts from the fishers in the area.  She disappeared on Tuesday, September 7.  We looked for her every night after work.  We found the site where the bear was feeding, we found evidence of many of the animals that make our stretch of the Fraser home.  But we never found her.  I don't know what became of her and I can only hope she was at peace.  She was patient, honest, loyal and protective, in many ways my best friend.  I wish that I had been able to be a better friend to her.