“Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.” -Nelson Mandela
I am resentful.
I didn’t realise it fully until a co-worker shared that quote with me and then BAM like a lightning bolt to the heart it hit me and hurt me.
I am resentful.
This whole twisted scenario with my a-hole co-teacher has left me bitter and untrusting and apathetic. F-that.
I am now in therapy. Yup, you read that right. Therapy. I knew enough that to conquer this beast of disappointment I needed help to do it in a healthy manner. But right now, in the early phases of therapy, I am angry and resentful that I was in a situation that lead to this. Feck feck feck.
When I began this co-teaching assignment with “GUY”, the first thing he said to me on the first day of school was ” I don’t even want to teach anymore.” I responded with “so either retire or change your mind because I am with you until June.”
I am realising that to really work through this situation, I need to let it out, I need to write and tell it how I felt regardless of who may ever read this. I do that – censor myself in order to be polite or respectful. WHATEVER. DONE WITH THAT.
I know I know I lead off with a quote from Mandela about resentment being poisonous and now I am ranting about my resentment instead of letting it go. I have got to let it out before I let it go.
So, GUY is a 46 year old out of shape arrogant alcoholic. He is one of my school’s disciplinarians who gets off on exerting his power and size as a source of authority and fear among others. A-hole. I am going to say it several time because I am in the anger phase but he is NOT someone that should be working around children. I know that he is an alcoholic because he felt is necessary and appropriate to reference it constantly. He has no filter. He was proud to show his chip to anyone who paused in front of him for more that 20 seconds even if children were present. He wanted to stop a lesson one day to talk about something that came up in his AA meeting the night before. Somewhere by the grace of God he had the wherewith all to ask me first if that would be OK. I quickly said NO.
Students do not need to be privy to your personal life to learn from you. Announcing you go to AA not only defeats the purpose of it being Alcoholics ANONYMOUS, but it gives them the thought bubble that you might be drunk now. What an ass. He found a way to talk about being at a “Town Meeting”. This man has been teaching for 15+ years and doesn’t have a scooby-doo of what is appropriate to say in front of children. Maybe because 14.5 of those years he hasn’t been sober.
Yes. About 8 weeks into the school year he was slumped at the desk as usual. (I say slumped because he arrives at work about 30 minutes before the class, hangs out with his buddies, has some coffee, rides the elevator and slumps down to get cozy for his 47 minutes of 94 minutes total he is required to teach all day. And I say Teach loosely because all he really did was slump into that chair.) He looked at me on this day and said “6 months and 3 days.”
me: “six months and three days…what are we talking about?”
GUY: “6 months and 3 days sobriety.”
me: “oh. ok. congratulations. Can we talk about it later? The class is watching and waiting for us to start the lesson.”
GUY: “I don’t know. I haven’t gone more than 6 months before. In fact this is the longest I have been sober since I was an adolescent. Since I was their age.”
me: “well, again congratulations. That’s ummm well something to talk about later, when we are not standing in front of our class while they listen to this. Let’s move forward.”
inner monolgue: WTF 6 months, you are making a pretty penny teaching 2 classes and scaring kids in the hallway and you have been drunk! Great, this will make it so much easier to take the fact that I am one of the next teachers to be layed off due to lower seniority. Fecker.
Wow that inner monologue is chocked full of resentment.
Let me take a moment to reveal about the first time I met GUY.
I was teaching an inclusion ELA class on the 3rd floor of my building. At the beginning of the period I was in the doorway greeting students. Then I went into the classroom to join class and get things started. I was working with a great co-teacher and now friend. We were having a great week and it was relatively early in my tenure at this school. Maybe the first month. I heard a commotion in the hallway. I went to the door way to have a look – make sure it wasn’t one of our students. I saw a boy walking away from someone and yelling. It was a Dean (GUY) who was wearing cargo shorts and a T-Shirt. The student and Dean exchanged some words. The student stopped and turned around to face the Dean. At this time, the man grabbed the kid by the throat and pinned him to the wall so that his feet were not touching the floor. I was stunned as the Dean was aggressively belittling the child. Mid-sentence the Dean turns to me and says in a cheerful voice, “Hi, I am GUY.” I said, ” I am SOUL TEACH.” Then he turns back to the kid and finished his browbeating. I was holding my breath, not knowing what to do. He dropped the kid and both went their separate ways. Me? well I stood there for a second or two and walked in to finish teaching my class. In my head I knew I had to stay away from that teacher and find out what is going on with these kids.
When I told that story to GUY in the first weeks of teaching with him this year, now four years since the incident. He said, “that’s awesome, I am awesome!”
more another time, I need a break from thinking about him and his awesomeness.