Bridge, so far.


wow. its been far too long since i’ve been on here.

life has been crazy to say the least over the past almost 2 months, here’s a brief summary:
new job.
21st birthday.
found a roommate.
found an apartment.
CMA Fest.
tons of celebrities dying.
that’s pretty much the jist of it all.
From my birthday-July 18th i have been/will be serving as a teacher at the Nashville Bridge program sponsored by the YMCA. (www.thenashvillebridge.org). I’ve been teaching a class on Model UN to upcoming 8th graders and serving as a “water girl” on Mondays for sports at Centennial Park and co-teaching scrapbooking on Thursdays to a mixture of upcoming 7th-10th graders. I work at Hume Fogg in Downtown Nashville, which is AWESOME because those of you who know me know I have a “slight” obsession with downtown. Here’s a brief summary of my days for those of you who are curious:
7am–Arrive at Hume Fogg
8am-12noon–student breakfast then Teach 3 classes of Model UN Prep + 1 off period
12noon-3:30pm–lunch, afternoon enrichments
Mondays: sports
Wednesdays: Field Trip
Thursdays: Arts
Fridays: Special Event
4pm: (everyday except wednesdays when its 5:15pm) leave Hume Fogg for the day
5:30ish pm: Arrive home after lovely rush hour traffic to Hendersonville
7pm: After dinner, my nights were usually spent working on worksheets, lesson plans, grading journals, or creating activities/projects for the next day then I head to bed at 10:30 to start again the next day at 5:30am.
Needless to say, it was a pretty busy month of June and the next two weeks of July are up in the air, but will be extremely busy themselves I’m just assuming.
The job has been fun, don’t get me wrong, but it has also been one of the most stressful experiences of my life. I have had only short glimpses of so called “free time” that most summers offer and have hardly had any nights where I’ve been able to be my natural night owl self and stay up writing, watching tv, hanging out, or anything else I would typically do during my ‘prime time’ hours of fun and enjoyment. I’m not complaining about the job, but I do wish I had been able to be less stressed and busy because it is summer and there are things I’d like to do with my free time, but I knew I would be busy when I took this job, just didn’t know I’d be THIS busy.
This job has also taught me alot about myself, not necessarily in the ways I expected/hoped for, but I have learned some. I do enjoy being around students and being an influence in their lives, it’s exhausting but in the best way possible. I also enjoy decorating classrooms, but I already knew that. I also enjoy being around a school environment. The Bridge is not exactly school because there are no grades and this does not directly affect their academic careers at their August-May schools, but it is somewhat of a school environment. It does not have the politics that schools sadly do and there is no set curriculum which is good and bad, depending upon the class. I really enjoy the school environment and middle school students. I think I would enjoy working with high school students as well, but I never see myself working in an elementary school, at all. Knowing all of this, I think I might be able to see myself teaching, briefly. I don’t think I can picture myself as a career teacher because I just feel that I would get burnt out, but I could see myself doing it briefly after college, possibly. I could definitely see myself as a guidance counselor. I loved the small class sizes because it gave me an opportunity to have more one-on-one time with the students and cater my classes to their individual needs and skill levels, something a 30 student classroom can never do. I am much better working with students in small groups than controlling a larger one, but I think this is the way anyone is likely. I also know that research shows that smaller classrooms are more effective for everyone except the people financing them, but those people…that’s another story.
We went to a place called Kipp Academy during our training week, which I may look more into after college for a few years, not sure. http://www.kippacademynashville.org/
I also learned that I enjoy the nonprofit environment because I get to make a positive difference in a direct way in the lives of youth, but I HATE it because it is soo difficult to find funding for. I could write an entire note about this, and I don’t know all the details of it, but it deeply saddens me that the Bridge has such a problem finding funding for its program with their being such an abundance of wealth just around Nashville. Again, that could be a note in itself, but its frustrating, but its rewarding, and I wish more people would recognize that.
While this job has been fun and has taught me many things as you’ve read above, I’ve also been slightly disappointed in myself. I expected and hoped for and had decided upon this job because I felt this was where God was pushing me to be and that this job was going to allow me the time to reconnect and get in the habit of having a more consistent quiet time of reading the word more and spending more time alone with God and it has not allowed for that, but nor have I really held myself to the standard I said I would. This job is an extremely serving job, and I know that His strength has gotten me through this, but I have not spent as much outside time with Him as I need to and said I was going to. This job schedule has been more crazy than any job ever should be, but that is not an excuse.
I also said I was going to work out at least 3 days a week and that has not happened, at all.
The next two weeks, not exactly sure what they hold because organization/structure is crazy and then I will be at Barefoot Republic Camp for a week (http://www.barefootrepublic.org/). Pray for me and wish me luck through all of this and pray that I would set the time aside to read the Word more and workout, both of these are necessary for my life, I’ve just been slacking.
As for the rest of my summer, well I’m sure this note is long enough for now, so I’ll update that soon.
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