Brian's Ramblings

My thoughts in text, photo, and video form

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Return

20 years ago, Michael Jordan returned to basketball after a stint in playing baseball for a Chicago White Sox farm league team.  He provided a simple statement to the media, "I'm back."  This simple statement spoke volumes and basketball fans rejoiced, as they could see one of the greatest athletes of all time in action again.

"Brian's Ramblings" was neglected for many, many years; life became busy and I was not good at balancing everything on my plate.  Looking at my last post, it has been nearly 3 years since my last post.

I am now an instructor for the Department of Special Education in the College of Education at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.  I continue to teach SPED 480, Technology for Children with Disabilities and truly love what I do.

For those wondering, I am not a doctor, nor will I become one.  To those who I have not kept in contact with, I apologize.  I will not spend much time discussing this area of my life, as it's personal and I have found peace, so I'll leave it at that.  I can say that I chose to pursue a different path to reach my desired destination, teaching at a university.  I'm happy where I am and very grateful to have such a wonderful opportunity to do something I genuinely love!

Writing has been a nice therapeutic outlet for me, so I'm hoping to compose more entries.  That said, I won't compose something for the sake of posting something.  I appreciate anyone who takes the time to read my entries, so I will be conscious in providing substantial entries.

The ability to do focused writing has become more of a challenge, so if you notice minor errors here and there, I apologize.  Just the other day I took a moment to reflect on where I am in life, teaching future educators and having to communicate clearly and effectively in such a position.

I thrive in situations that involve "larger" audiences, where I have a more "captive" audience, such as students who pay tuition to learn from me.  I take this part extremely seriously, as I feel a great responsibility to help in the development of young people who will go on to become EXCELLENT educators in our communities.

The more I thought about this, I realized that I am terrible in environments where making "small talk" is required.  Social gatherings like big parties, social events, or situations requiring me to converse with people who are basically strangers; I do not excel in these environments.  Some might think, "how can this be? you teach large groups of students!" 

Communicating is still very fresh and new to me.  We only need to look back about 13 years to when I communicated through written formats, pen and paper specifically.  So, my social skills are far less than someone who has communicated orally for years.  I would like to think I've gotten a little better in socializing, but I still find moments where I feel like a fish out of water.  My "water" happens to be home, where my communications have been fairly consistent over many years.

In order to develop better social skills, as we all know that most people who are sociable are usually more likeable. I don't aim to have others "like" me more, I don't view myself as a status update on Facebook, but just being a better friend and communicator would enable me to be a better person in general.  This is a work in progress and will likely continue to be....

Over the last 2 years, I've lost two pillars in my life - my grandma and grandpa (my father's parents).  So for the first time in my life, I'm void of having grandparents.  My memories with all of my grandparents are special and endearing.  I was blessed to have very supportive grandparents and they were not shy about expressing how proud they were of their grandchildren. 

Death is such a powerful reminder of how precious life is and how fleeting it can be.  Though one set of my grandparents lived well into their nineties, as a grandson you can almost take their presence for granted.  Never take any life for granted.  Take the time to cherish every moment you have with people you care about and love.  Never leave something for the "next time," as that moment may never come.

Never take relationships for granted, period.  If you appreciate someone, tell them!  If you have a problem with someone, tell them....communicate to work it out.  If you love someone, tell them!  Thoughts left unsaid will remain only in one's mind; most people are not mind readers.

As I look forward to enjoying spring break, it's a misconception that teachers can take a full week off and do nothing.  There are still assignments and projects to be graded.  However, I do intend to allow myself to do NOTHING related to work for a few days, maybe more.

If you're on spring break, enjoy it.  If you're approaching spring break, hang in there.  If you don't have a spring break, keep doing what you're doing, but make sure you take at least a day or two out of each week to care for yourself!  We, and I'm guilty of this, can get caught up in doing and doing, and doing even more, without giving ourselves a break.  This can lead to exhaustion, leading to a decrease in passion towards anything you do in life.

Resting for a day can really be the difference in enjoying some success versus enjoying LOTS of success.

Until next time.......


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