Control is an illusion. I don’t believe that you can ever really control someone else, so I decided not to try. Why reach for something that isn’t real? It is a theory that has served me well. I offer advice, I suggest ideas, I study people, but I am pretty quick to let go of them and see what happens. So, how did I get here?
The older classes are easier, the students more focused, and I don’t have any real problems with them. I am still learning, but it doesn’t feel like things are falling apart. It just feels like something I need to learn more about, skills I need to work on. The younger classes are more difficult. Children who study all day, and have more energy than I know what to do with.
I tend to be low energy, by preference, by design, by practice. Finding that high energy person inside is difficult, if only because I have buried him for so long. I know he is there, and I can find him for a moment at a time, but I need him to be there, to be complete. That is half of what I need to know. The other half comes back to control.
I prefer to walk my own way, dealing with who I find along the way. I never really lead, and I never really follow. I value being alone and independent as much as I value being in a group. I think better alone, but I rarely come up with new ideas without help. To learn what I need, I have to have other people.
I keep asking the other teachers questions, I started teaching myself the alphabet in American sign language, and there are always new techniques to try, but sometimes it’s hard to see the long game. In my life I focus on learning skills slowly. The question from the Buddha, “how do you fill the ocean? Drop by drop.” My problem is time.
I will learn what I need to eventually, but will I learn it in time to really succeed here? Will I be able to become the person I need to be for this job? Right now, I am the wrong person to be here, but who exactly can I become?
I try to focus on the small successes, to look at the times I succeed rather than the times I fail, but right now they seem to be in equal measure. Maybe that’s enough, to reach a balance point where I can start to move forward. Maybe it’s not.
I can’t really know what I need to be yet. I am still learning how to see the world I am in, to try and understand what is going on. I learn new angles every day, new tactics, new ways to be more, but I think I need a type of humor I’ve only used sarcastically in the past.
To really embrace what I need to become is hard. To be something beyond what I wanted to be in the past. I don’t even know if I really want to be that person now, but I know I need to. I need to get their attention, I need to be louder, but simpler. At least I am starting to understand what I need to be.
For today, that is enough. It has to be. Drop by drop. The problem with life is that we want it to be easy, but when it is, it’s boring. Climbing the mountain, step by step. So many things in my life have been so hard, but when I look back, it was nothing, really. The difficulty is always to get past the idea that it is hard. The idea that climbing to the top is more than a series of steps and pauses. That becoming is more than a series of moments where I learned something completely new. It’s like sprinting, so painful in the moment, then a pause for my heart to slow, and then just a memory.
The problem with today is that I’m still sprinting, and I don’t really know when I can stop.