Posted in Random Thoughts, Teaching

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week

So it’s Wednesday of teacher appreciation week, and I’m sitting here feeling more humbled and appreciated than I have in a really long time.  Is it because of all of the snacks we’ve gotten?  The pay raise? (HA!)  Nope.  It’s because of the love I’m feeling from students past and present, and the memories that I hold dear.

Unfortunately, there are people out there who don’t see the actuality of what we do.  I was discussing with family how stressful teaching is.  How there are plenty of teachers who come into this profession and end up on the verge of mental breakdown, that end up on antidepressants and anti-anxiety medication to help regulate their moods.  How we strive to make a difference in our students’ lives, often at a great cost to ourselves.  And their response?  “I have no pity for any of you.  You knew what you were doing.  It’s just a job.  You have a degree.  You could get a different job.  If it’s so bad, quit.”

But isn’t that it?  Do you want teachers in your buildings who lack the capacity to empathize with the whole child?  Do you want teachers who are here for a paycheck and couldn’t care less about the student and their situation.  Do you want teachers who stand idly by while a student is going through a crisis.  Do you want someone who won’t give a hug or helpful advice because it might cause them to care too much?

I don’t understand that mentality.  Sure, getting another job might be a possibility, but as someone who is in the business of trying to help students realize the great variety that life has to offer once they leave these halls, is that the message we want to send?  That it’s just a paycheck at the end of the day, and that we can always just move on if the stress gets to be too much?

Instead, why can’t we help the people in this profession feel better.  Provide them with access to mental health professionals.  Give us opportunities to destress and enjoy all that teaching has to offer.  Give us the ability to take time to get to know our kids and share some of what we enjoy with them, instead of the constant bombardment of data collection points and curriculum standard numbers.  Don’t shun people for needing help to shoulder all that teaching entails.  Because it entails a lot.

I’d rather have people fully equipped and willing to handle all it comes with, than someone who is cold and reduces it down to nothing more than a number and a paycheck.

But what do I know?

My choice in life was to be a teacher…

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Posted in Random Thoughts, relationships, Teaching

‘Tis The Season

It’s that time of year again, the one to reflect on the events of the past, the things we wish we had done, the things we wish we hadn’t done, and anything and everything that has made us think or feel anything over the past year.  Some people use it as a time of joyous reflection, others of morose despair. Me, I like to think of it as a mix of the two.

This year has been a lot of everything. I have a lot to reflect on. Who I am. What my life is like, and if I ever thought it would end up quite like this. Where am I going from here. What my career is going to be. Who am I going to be.

I look around my classroo mas I type this, knowign that this might very well be the last holiday season spent within these walls. I am met with a feeling of bitter sadness.  If there is anything in my life that I have loved outside of my blood family, it is this. This little corner of the building that I have carved out and made my own.

I look at my students, see their smiles, their strange quirks, and I love them for it. Even the one who tries to pretend like he’s writing but is really watching Gary’s Mod videos. Like, seriously, your computer screen is facing me. You aren’t fooling anyone.

And I am going to miss them.

You know, today, I got word from a couple of my students that their writing was chosen to be featured on an online website for young writers. How cool is that? Not that it matters to anyone but me, but dang, it makes me proud.

The year hasn’t been all bad, though. This has been the most amazing year with my son. He’s a little over one now, tottering around on his own two feet, making me laugh at every turn. I always knew I wanted to be a mother, but seeing him just solidifies it.

I don’t really know where I’m going with this article. Not that anyone reads this stuff to begin with. I just think that I needed to write something about what I’m thinking and feeling. -shrug-

I guess I’ll just sign this entry off here, for now.

 

Posted in Gaming, Motherhood, Random Thoughts

Juggling Recreation Time

If there was one thing that I really loved to do before I had my son, it was playing video games. For at least 6 years, I was a super active member of the online community of FFXIV. Before that, I had never really played games before, but this game gave me a whole new social life. Because I got involved in this game and community, I met many of the people that I am friends with today.

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I gave a good portion of my time and energy to these people who became like a second family to me. I remember telling them that I was pregnant, and how excited I was to share in that experience with them. For the next 8 months of my pregnancy, I shared my ups and downs, my pains, my aches, and my joys.

I remember at one point being on a skype call with my good friend Tay, and all of a sudden she asked, “Are you rubbing your stomach?” It threw me off because I had no clue how she knew. Apparently she could hear the sound of my hand on my stomach, something that had turned into background noise, but something that held special significance for her. For the rest of my pregnancy, she would always tease me when she heard it. It became a game, one that always made me smile.

As my pregnancy progressed, I knew that my time with them was going to grow short. I new that once R came, I’d have to give up my time with them in exchange for diaper changes, feedings, and sleepless nights. But I never expected it to hit me so hard.

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I’ve found that I really miss my former social life. I miss the people I used to talk with on the regular, and I find that it’s become more and more difficult to find things in common with these people. And I promised that I wouldn’t be that person. I didn’t want to be the woman who only talks about her child in front of everyone…but that’s exactly what I’ve become. Instead of screenshots of my character and the stories I wrote for her, my phone is now loaded with one of the 12,000 pictures of my son…most of which are identical to each other.

Instead of spending my nights up until all hours of the morning laughing with friends, I am in bed by 10 pm, hoping that my LO sleeps well and will smile at me when he wakes up. Instead of singing silly songs and killing monsters on the computer, I’m talking to my son from the point of view of his Batman toy, or trying to feed him his own feet. Nothing prepared me for the love that I would feel for him. And nothing has prepared me for the melancholy I sometimes feel for the friendships and fun I used to have.

Would I trade them? No. They’re two completely different worlds. I am happier now than I ever thought I could be. But would I like to find some more time here and there to remember what that life was like? Sure.

I just hope that all of my friends remember how much I cared for them. And that hopefully, someday, I’ll be able to make a return, and they’ll welcome me back with open arms. Until then, I’ll be over here, blowing raspberries with my baby.

 

~Aly, aka The Mommy Gamer

Posted in Random Thoughts

First blog post

Welcome to the Mommy Gamer.

You may be asking yourself, “Who is this woman, and what makes her think she has anything worth reading?”

Well, I’m not much. I’m a simple woman. I love to read. I love playing video games. I enjoy spending time with my husband, son, and extended family. I’m a child of the internet generation. What do I have to say that’s different from anyone else? Probably not a damned thing. And that’s okay.

I created this place as a space for me to put my thoughts on motherhood, socializing in an age in which people don’t get out so much anymore, teaching the youth of tomorrow, being a good person, and reviewing products and games that mean something to me.

I hope you stick around and give me a read. If it’s not what you’re looking for, I appreciate you giving me the time of day. And if it is, I hope you come back again. I look forward to interacting with you all, and hope to share a bit of my life with you all.

 

~Aly, aka The Mommy Gamer