I loved it. A relationship bloomed between a love-cynical supposed asexual geometry teacher and an unhappy secretary housewife. Okay, I won't lie, the fact that it was a maths teacher made me even more joyous. Seems the English, language and art teachers get all the action in the romance films. Anyway, I loved how they portrayed it all with honesty, even the hard bits. I adored the relationship between the two. The naked basketball scene and then the wedding dress basketball scene were lovely.
It reminded me of how my friends tease me and ask, "Well, why don't you go hook up with a teacher, professor or teaching assistant?" and save tear the mickey out of them, I seldom know what to say. I acknowledge that Loving Annabelle is one of my favourite films, but it has nothing to with the student Annabelle to me--it's all about Simone, the teacher.
And it made me realise for the first time precisely why. While, yes, I am attracted to many teachers, it's not about me, the Current Space and Time 'me.' Which is why I don't fantasise about teachers--it isn't like that, not that taboo concept. It's sort of where I aspire to be. Not an ACTUAL teacher (although someday, who knows, perhaps), but with a teacher role. Not specifically a teacher the way people think of them (preschool, elementary, junior high, high school, professor, lecturer, whatever), I mean someone who does have that role. Essentially a teacher is someone who has information and passes it on in some manner.
With that definition, we're all teachers. However, some people give off that Teacher Feel. It reminded me of the two types of women (loose categorising) that I tend to fall for: the hard disciplinarian with the developed shell exterior and emotional, sensitive core and then the compassionate mentor with a kind disposition but ability to stand up occurs.
I am attracted to knowledge and wisdom. I am attracted to communication. Wouldn't it make sense, then, that I would be attracted to the role of one who teachers? Teaches anything. Teaches myths and stories, teaches silent meditation, teaches anything. They have the knowledge to share, and thus they are knowledgeable (at least in those areas). They have the ability to share it, and thus they are communicative. Not all teachers, of course--we all fall into the wrong career from time to time, I fear--but many, the goodies, the ones you can 'feel out.'
Teachers have always been a Safe Space for me. Preschool I had the Mickey Mouse teacher. Kindergarten I had Mrs. O'Connel (the Sweetie) and Mrs. Crawford (the Disciplinarian with a kind streak running beneath). Then Mrs. Woodams, lovely Mrs. Woodams who understood me and told my mother of my need for space until I had my own room and thrived. Ms. Plotzick, with her straight spine but encouraging smile, who grew to love my quiet nature and protected me without letting me catch on. Mrs. Reilly, whose easy laughter and nicknames (Furry Friend) left me accepted and loved. Mr. Pickering, who encouraged my love of science and didn't discriminate because I was female. Mrs. Curtain, who at least tried to keep the bullies away. Mrs. Schiaer, Mrs. McGovern, Mr. Murtari, Mrs. Ryan. Mrs. Osborne, who embraced me through hard times and helped me through. Ms. Berneis, Mrs. Henrich. Mr. Dufault, who loved my sardonic wit and sarcastic smile, but acknowledged and loved the deeper parts of me as well. Mrs. Smith, who knew I had my own little world in my head but also understood that I joined this reality just fine. Mrs. Steele, who was so often in her OWN little world but took the time out to love me and mine as well. Mrs. Cooper, the strict disciplinarian who let some special students under her skin regardless, and frequently sent me amused little grins. Ms. Watson, who helped me grow and follow my own path and heart. Mrs. Brown, who had such a hard shell that knocked fear into her students' hearts, but who didn't scare me more than one day and who supported me through dark times that could have consumed me. Mrs. Cavanagh, who waded through her own difficulties with inner strength and grace, but who never acknowledged them in herself and instead loved me for those very same traits. Mr. Crowley, whose easy smile and passion for history gave me enough comfort to send him the song I had written, and who replied that it had made him cry. Mrs. Quinn, who was patient and kind with me through my difficulty and fear with maths, and acknowledged that it was all in my head, for the subject loved me in return. Pam, who was like a grown version of me and appreciated having a student who thought and cared. Professor Crowley, who was surprised to have a high school student in her college class come to sit under her skin and in her heart, and seemed so shocked that a student would care enough to send a 'get well' email and check in.
I smile to think of them all. I remember each and every teacher I've ever had, even if I didn't specifically mention them. There are wonderful memories I have of each. (University professors included, even as it is less personal--save Duncan and Simon, whom I adore.)
I suppose I have been thinking of it is some. I've been thinking about the emails I will be writing soon to see which of them would like to meet up for coffee. I know many of them will.
I love, most of all, their humanity. I think that is what draws me most to the role, or, no, the concept of a teacher. The humanity that shines through the good teachers...that, to me, is the stuff of beauty. The sad part to me, when I watched it all, was how few of them expected the same humanity from the students. Most were surprised by my 'antics,' and I remember the talk of delight in the staff room that I later heard of from some of them. They were all astounded by various birthday notes, funny Valentines cards, offer of a handshake (instead of an inappropriate hug) when one looked upset, questions of 'you seem peeved, are you doing alright?', check-up emails, friendly smiles... They all seemed to have such an endless capacity for love, patience, compassion, whatever the trait...I just wanted to offer some of it back.
It used to make me a little sad, wondering how much abuse they had to put up with for such a noble job, but when they smiled at me at the end of the day it seemed alright. They must have found what they were looking for somehow. Receptive students, less-boring-than-usual staff meetings, a new way to explain a technique...but mainly the first, I suppose.
Well, I guess in a roundabout way, this entry explains why I like to send thank-you notes to teachers.
And also why I romanticise them--not for now, not to create the foundation for any Professor Seduction Plans (I would never put anyone in that situation), but for the future, when I am on their level. When I am a woman who feels she also has something to give. Someone with equal footing. Someone who is not a 'student' by role (however, we all our students in this universe), but a peer.
Well, that was pretty much an ode to teachers everywhere! Laughter. But it's true. And because I saw what livejournal's prompt is just a few minutes ago, I thought I'd that in, since I pretty much answered it.
I've mentioned you all, my dears. Most of you are my favourites, and I have an endless capacity for more. The new will never push out the old. Thank you for your patience and your knowledge. It all means the world to me.