By the way, next week is my birthday. I will be thirty-three years old. Since last week was Thanksgiving, and this week is my birthday, I thought I would take an assessment of my present situation and remind myself all the reasons I should be thankful. Hopefully, I will also have some bubbly on my birthday (though I hope it is something better than Ballatore Gran Spumante, like the model above). I love champagne, sparkling wine, Asti, and prosecco, any of the before mentioned will do (Moët White Star is my favorite). While in France, I learned the dangers of cheap champagne. (Note: never, ever, ever, and I mean, never, buy a €1 bottle of champagne in France. It will be the worst hangover you have ever had, no matter how little of it you drink.)
I am certainly glad that a few years ago, I decided to change my attitude about life and become an optimist. I keep the motto that everything will work out in the end, because it is God’s will, not mine. I could easily be a pessimist, like many people I know, including my mother. I am still in graduate school, though I wish that I were finished by now and if I had not procrastinated and things had not gone against me several times, I might be done by now. I have a job I really don’t like at a small private academy teaching middle and high school students, with some subjects outside my field and making very little money. Five days a week, I deal with spoiled brats who have very little respect for elders, and I deal with an administrator who has a completely different philosophy than me when it comes to education. I have to deal with parents, who think their children do no wrong and that I show favoritism to other kids, which they see as a bad thing unless it is their kid that they see me showing favor to. Furthermore, my parents know that I am gay and refuse to accept it. They insist on a total don’t ask, don’t tell, don’t discuss policy toward my sexuality.
So what am I thankful for? First of all, in this economy, I have a job doing what I love to do: teach. It may not be a perfect situation and on many days it may be frustrating, but at least it is a job and it is a teaching job.
Second, even though the income is not great, I found a wonderful little house to rent with a ridiculously low rent from the sweetest landlady who is not nosy in a small town of busybodies. This also means that I am no longer living with my parents. I have my freedom to come and go as I please, with no questions asked. It may not be a lot, but it is something.
I also have a college class that I teach two nights a week that keeps me sane. My students are older and are an absolute joy to teach. Even after a long trying day teaching middle and high schoolers, my college class can lift my energy and spirit like nothing else. I wish everyone had the chance to find that much fulfillment in a job that only takes two and a half hours a week.
Furthermore, though my parents may not like my sexuality, nor fully support it, at least they did not disown me. They still love me no matter what and maybe one day they will accept the situation for what it is. Until that time, the don’t ask, don’t tell, don’t discuss policy is working fine as a sort of armistice. At least it keeps questions from being asked all the time.
Also, I have not given up on graduate school. I will get my PhD eventually, I just have to finish this damn dissertation. I think I am on the right track finally, and I just need to learn how to manage my small amounts of free time better. Whether that means working on my dissertation during my planning period at school or learning to get enough sleep. Maybe I am somewhat caught up on my sleep after this week where I have done a lot of sleeping during my recovery from surgery.
Lastly, since I started my blogs, I have made some wonderful new friends. Those friends I cherish as much as the flesh and blood friends I know in my personal life. You guys are just as real to me as those flesh and blood friends (after all, you are made of flesh and blood). I love hearing from you guys through comments, emails, chatting, text messages. All of you are dear to me, though some I may not keep in touch with like I should, I still love you guys and think about you. Thanks for being my friends.
Oh, and one last thing. I have made it to my thirty-third year (well almost, here’s hoping, LOL). Now if this just means that I am only a third or a fourth of the way through my life, then I have a long and happy life to look forward to. So my advice, look at the things you can be thankful for, not what you might find depressing. Look on the bright side, and be an optimist.