Sunday, August 21, 2011

Ten Years

Back in school I remember writing in classes over the years where I saw myself in ten years. I have my students do the same thing sometimes. For some people that is very hard to do. Others it is very easy because they have their whole life planned out. I was one of those people who had my whole life planned out.This last year I have done lots of reflecting on my life, where I am now, where I thought I would be, how things are different here than in the US, where I think the future might take me. I used to plan years and years in advance. Now I plan a week at a time. I have a couple vague notions about plans a couple months in the future, but not too far because no one knows what tomorrow will hold.

Ten years ago on August 28, 2001 I was getting ready for my last year of college at Black Hills State University with a degree in Elementary Education. I went out a with a couple people after work to the bar to have a drink. Later that night I went with my family to Applebee's for dinner. Turning 21 was kind of a big deal because I knew that meant that just around the corner I was going to be graduating from college and getting a job. Looking ten years into the future I was going to be an Elementary Teacher teaching probably in Gillette or maybe Spearfish or Rapid City. I was going to be married with two children, hopefully a boy and girl. I was going to live in a house built by my Dad. I was going to have at least two cats. One of whom was going to be Pepper (my cat from 8 years of age). I was also probably going to have a dog. I wanted a Boston Bull Terrier.

Ten years late on August 28, 2011 I am living in Malaysia. I am a middle school and high school English teacher. I went back to school for further education so I have not been teaching as long as I thought I would be, but am very happy I am an English teacher. I am glad though that I have an Elementary degree which helped me learn methods of teaching and not just content. I am still single and no children. Pepper has been gone for a little while. I have two cats Onyx and Snickers, and they live with my parents right now. I have a house built by my Dad that I lived in for a year and right now someone is renting it while I live here. I am glad I decided not to get a dog, before I ended up moving here. I thought my 31st birthday would be spent with my husband and children doing something like dinner for my birthday. Maybe where I cooked my own birthday dinner. Instead, I am going to be in Singapore August 28th, having dinner and going to the show "The Lion King". Turning 31, well it is not really a big deal. It means I am another year older. I don't feel any older than I did at 21. I think it is working with young people. I remember that I am a grown-up when I am around them but not that I am any older than when I graduated from college. I have changed in some ways and in some ways I have remained the same.

Looking ten years into the future August 28, 2021. I have no idea where I will be living. Maybe the United States, maybe some foreign country. I hope to still be a teacher. Will I be married? I don't know. Will I have children? I don't know. My two cats hopefully will be living with me, but may be still with my parents. My house? It will still exist, but will I own it or live in it? I don't know.  Turning 41, well it might not be a big deal. I might still feel the same age as when I turned 21 or turning 31 or I could feel like I am getting older.  Some things I am fairly certain I can know: that I will still love my parents, brother and other family, that I will still love reading, that I will still love James Bond, that I will still love Betty Boop, that I will still love cats, that Jackson Hole will still be my favorite place on Earth, that I will still love working with students, that I will still love Teddy Bears, that I will still love chocolate and popcorn, that I will still love gemstones, that I will still dream that when I grow up I want to be a teacher and professional ballerina and for James Bond to marry me, that roses are my favorite flower and purple- my favorite color.