Saturday, February 28, 2015

Passing (or How Little They See)

I walk down the hallway, my hand running across the lockers, across the walls. It keeps me here. It shows me where I am. It keeps me balanced and makes me understand what hallway I'm in and when I need to turn.

I go to the room. The bell shrieks. I freeze up. I forget what I'm doing and where I am. All that I know is the noise. It's too much. I don't know how to move my arms to cover my ears. I don't know how to soothe myself. I just know how to exist, frozen, in space and in time.

I come back. I go back where I was. I continue on, talking about whatever was going on. Had they changed topics? Probably not. Usually its me teaching something. I just keep going. I explain it well. I tell them what is going on. I teach myself that when the bell goes, I need to tell them to leave even if they don't want to go to class. Eventually I remember that. It takes a while to stop teaching and tell them to leave, but not too long.

I have my math. I go back to it. I have how people are doing. That I keep track of. Why they aren't doing well. How can I improve their educations. What aren't they getting and how do these pieces fit together. I keep track of it always. I'm always fitting the pieces together.

They don't notice. They see someone teaching math. They don't notice the person always taking care of their body in order to have any clue what is going on. They don't notice the lack of anything off topic.

Then someone says hi, and I don't reply. They repeat it multiple times. I eventually process that there is someone there talking to me. A bit later I process I should reply. Um, what do I say, I don't know. Too much going on. All my processes on surviving. Not on these things. I try to redirect because its necessary. Enough gets through. I wave. I'm pretty sure that was the right thing to do. Words were to hard but gestures I could force through. I think she got annoyed first. My emotion sense of voices are saying "negative".

I keep going. I have to swap places I'm working. Does everything else get to stay the same? Yes, good. I forget some things in the shuffle. Got most of it. Piece it together. Managed to make it not a big deal that I forgot pencils by loaning out my pen repetitively. All the things I have to think about to manage to swap are so many. But its not so many that I can't teach my students, just that its a bit more awkward and we're a bit slower. We make it through the day.

Because I swapped places I'm expected to get my students here somehow. How do I do that? I ask. I'm told there's the phone to the office or something. I don't understand. I look at my list and have names and locations. I ask what to say. She explains something about asking for locations and students and I don't understand what to say. I try to get it clarified but its still confusing. She moves onto something else. I do everything I can to make it easier to do our work, but run out of things to prepare. I need my students. I go over and pick up the phone. I say hello. There's someone there. What do I say. I don't know. I'm confused. I try to ask the person in the room again, and I still can't figure out what's meant. I try to explain what I need and it doesn't make sense. I try again. It still doesn't work. I directly say what it is I need to tell them, that I have students in rooms and I need them here and I don't know how to get them here. They ask for what rooms and what students, I tell them, and get my students. Now I can do my work. I know how to work with students. Not how to do these phone things these are weird and complicated.

I go back to the hallways, flapping my hands, running them along the walls. I re-orient myself here. Make myself understand what is going on. Then back to my students. Teaching them makes sense, if I only I can get through the rest of the day.

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