Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Do I really Need More Problems?

" There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in it's hands. You seek problems because you need their gifts."

Richard Bach

I must be in need of many gifts. There has been no end to the problems that have cropped up this week.

The Soapbox Derby project is no longer on time to meet the June 25th dedication deadline, it will be runnning at least $5,000 over budget, and I have had to witness grown-ups, who claim to be professionals, behaving very badly.
Yelling, screaming, swearing, fingerpointing, lying, blaming, threatening, crying.

I am glad for my years of working with adolescents...I am used to emotional outbursts and over-reaction. I have been dealing with the blame-game for so long, that I can easily remove myself from the fray and look at the situation from the perspective of an observer. I've learned how to focus on the objective and find solutions. I try not to waste my time and energy by getting too worked up over disappointments. I don't take things personally. I've learned to let go.

This week has been stressful though. These artists! They are starting to make me crazy.

I find myself wondering whether the students are learning enough to make all the hard work worth my while. I'm not getting anything extra to put this project together. Maybe I should be like so many other teachers. Stick to the curriculum. No more public art. No more community collaboration. No more late nights. No more five hour meetings. No more working weekends. Just do the job I get paid for. There would be a lot less aggrevation.
And a lot less fun.

So I will try remember to look at the problems as opportunities, look at the emotional reactions as passion, and look at the dramatics as entertainment.

Now, if I can just find that $5,000 to finish up the stonework, I can regroup and start planning a dedication ceremony for the fall, and get to thinking about next year's big project.


hermit crab said...

There would be a lot less aggrevation.
And a lot less fun.

Absolutely. I find out of school and out of curriculum projects are always the best thing. – it's when rapid learning happens. I have been lucky enough to have worked with some great highly professional artists who have on the whole given more than they got back.

Good luck with all your planning.

marybeth said...

Thanks for your encouragement from across the pond.
Over the years, I've also been blessed to work with artists, tradesmen, and educators, who were dedicated, brilliant, and truly gifted. They made my job a joy. The easy friendships, professionalism, and satisfying collaborations,however, left me unprepared for the disruptions and stress inflicted upon my team by one big arrogant ego.
Ah well...live and learn.