Thursday, May 10, 2012


"Patience! Patience, my love."

Smeagol's convincing words to Gollum (to hold up on stealing the Ring back from Frodo) are words that we can all learn from (yes, I understand that not everyone is a LOTR fan, but please...hear me out.) 

I would describe myself as a patient person to a certain extent. I am not one to overly complain about something that isn't going my way. I can take my time on something if it is absolutely necessary.

You see, as patient as I am, I am the kind of person that likes to get something done as fast as I can. I've always been that way. If someone gives me something to do, I do it right away so I can start on the next thing. I'm not the kind of person that likes to drag stuff out to make it take forever. To me, that's just wasting time.

My life has changed in many, many ways since moving to American Samoa. I have learned so much about myself throughout the past year. I have grown and changed. I have also learned that sometimes, you just have to slow down whether you like it or not.

One thing that I have really learned is what the word patience means. I have also learned how patient I am willing to be in a place where patience means everything. Here are some examples:

Oh, the bell hasn't rung yet? And it was supposed to ring 20 minutes ago? The bell will ring when the bell rings (or when the office remembers to send someone out with the wooden stick to hit the oxygen tank.)

Oh, you were late to class because you came from the other side of campus? Ok, here's one thing I am NOT patient about. Samoans walk really slow. I'm talking reeeeeeeally slow. Even my really fit students walk at glacier pace. There is nothing wrong with this, but I just can't do it. I have really long legs and my legs like to go super fast. "Miss, you walk too fast."

Oh, you don't have your homework? Sigh. Assigning homework is like asking them to climb Mt. Everest. I take a deep breath and explain to them that not turning in their homework on time will make them lose points (of course this doesn't work either, but hey, at least I tried). Sigh. PATIENCE. I've gotten much better since the beginning of the year.

Oh, your final essay is due tomorrow and you haven't even started it yet? "You can do this. I will help you, but I believe in you and know that you will get it done." [I'm a nice teacher. Can't help it.]

Oh, it is raining so hard that I can't hear my music or the movie playing on my laptop. I actually like when this happens because I like just lying or sitting there, listening to the beautiful sound of the tropical rain...something I will miss so much.

These are just a few examples of ways I have to be calm and collected on this island. In the words of Smeagol, you won't get anything done if you aren't patient!

No comments: