Wednesday, January 8, 2014

If She Only Knew

Many, many years ago, an elementary education student took the path less traveled by those in her major and signed up for Advanced Techniques in Composition.  She soon found herself in a room full of English majors.  It was intimidating to be sure, but things just got worse.  Due to sleep issues that made punctuality a challenge, the professor advised her to drop the class.  Most of her opinion papers represented the opposite of her professor's point of view.  And then there were the page requirements.  It didn't matter what the minimum page requirement for an assignment was, chances were Miss Elementary Education Major was going to be one to two pages short. 

And somewhere along the way, she swayed the professor.  The professor was surprised that she kept showing up to class instead of dropping the class.  The professor appreciated that she could support her argument even if the professor didn't agree.  Most shocking, Miss Elementary Education Major had a meeting with the professor and was told that the minimum page requirements didn't apply to her.  Apparently, she had the ability "to take subject matter and put it into its simplest form without losing its complexity."  Furthermore, Miss Elementary Education Major should consider becoming and English because she "would never use her talents in an elementary school."

Well, Miss Elementary Education Major is an elementary teacher.  She had written countless forms of communication for a variety of reasons and is currently trying to write three plays involving kids fourth through eighth.   If that professor only knew how much those skills get used....

And while I'm looking her up, maybe I'll have a talk with that history professor who tried to convince me to become a history major as well....

Friday, January 3, 2014


When one starts a blog, they typically spend time considering the name of their blog.  It should have some kind of meaning.  I went a different route.  I typed in the first thing that popped into my head.  I didn't think about it.  I didn't give it a second thought.  I just typed and off I went.

Who knew the meaning of my blog title would come to me years later.

The Shel Silverstein poem found me.  I wasn't reading a book of poems.  I wasn't looking for inspiration.  I was bored and trying to find reasons to avoid the work I should be doing.  And this appeared. 

That's when it all clicked.  I have always had voices in my head.  Many, many voices.  They have been the voices of people I loved.  They have been the voices of people I respected.  They have been the voices of authority.  And, more times than not, they have been the voices of those who have judged me and pointed out all of my flaws. 

I listened to all of these voices.  It became a constant battle.  I tried to silence the voices by becoming what they expected me to be.  When decisions had to be made, I searched for the "right" voice to guide me. 

And one day, I realized I was missing the most important voice.  My own.  In an attempt to keep people happy, I listened to the other voices.  I had done this for so long that I wasn't even sure I could hear my own voice anymore.

After so many years of listening to the voices in my head, it's hard to listen to my own.  I make decisions and am immediately met with questions from the other voices.  But I'm ready to find my voice.  There will be mistakes.  There will be people who think I'm wrong.  And that has to be ok.  Because it's time for me to "just listen to the voice that speaks inside."