I am not a machine or a software program. I am not a desktop, laptop or a cell phone. I identify what makes a person happy and focus on it. I can say ‘no’ when I need to. I have expectations of excellence but at the same time, improvise. I am a content area expert and still manage to bridge hearts and minds. I can shift responsibility to others and inspire them. I build trust and influence by being consistently pleasant. I speak but I also listen which makes me a better, stronger leader and colleague. I am not a machine but a person who cares. I am a teacher.
Can I be broken? Of course I can. Unlike a machines I have an inner and an outer life. I have a family, friends and personal goals. I need balance to function. I cannot instantly switch from one task to another. I do not have a time machine or a door that flies me to another place. As long as a problem is simple a computer can split its effort and do two simple tasks at once. How complex are human interactions? And yet, I am asked to split and split and split my efforts. Cell phones do not need hugs when a program they are trying to run, crashes and the system reboots. My insides hurt when I cannot help; it hurts when because of unimportant issues, I am forced to turn away from the person in front of me. It breaks me. I am not a machine, I am a teacher.
Does something broken need to be fixed? That depends on how much you value it. I take things like my worn out furniture to the dump. I recycle my old electronics. I trade in my car on its last legs. I do all of these things and I do not shed a tear. Ask me though, if I am worried about my aunt who just the other day had to had to quickly get 3 litres of blood to save her life or if I am worried when my son’s asthma is so bad I have to sit up at night listening to his breathing? Some things are clearly worth trying to fix. The education system in Nova Scotia is filled with teachers and students who deserve something that is not broken; we need to see we are not desktops, laptops or cell phones but humans that are valued and cared for in the way that humans need to be valued and cared for.