lauren michele (arrowed) wrote,
lauren michele

a story of friendship, loss and lessons learned.

I am teaching a graphic novel called "Pedro and Me" right now, about Pedro Zamora, written by a Real World housemate and friend, Judd Winick. I teach it because homophobia is so rampant at my school, and I find myself getting upset at the blatant disrespect of who I am. Not that my students know, and I waver all the time about revealing things to them, but I don't think it's professional, and need to keep a certain distance. I am already accused of being too close, too much of a friend to my students. I will probably always get accused of that.

But really? Look at them. One of them told me, at a softball event a few weeks ago, that if everyone at BK had a teacher like me, we would really change the world. Another one comes in everyday to hang out with me after-school, even though I always have meetings and commitments. I know that I'm good at connecting with them, because I genuinely want to hear what they have to say. I really think it's as simple as that. I don't think it's magic.

Today, after Saturday school, where they argued whether or not the N-word should be banned from the English language, we went to a rally against gun violence at St. Mary's park. UP rolled deep, and I was so proud to see our youth out, speaking, connecting, talking to one another, enjoying the environment and listening to the message. I wish I was able to be there for the march!

I wore a string of beads for Emily. It has been 10 years, and I miss you. I hope your spirit looks down on us. Now, I come home to love. In spite of loss, we learn to grow and keep loving. I am learning to appreciate waking up everyday and not stressing the particulars. It will work out, somehow. I am sure. And you will be here with me, watching nascar and looking into my soul. Thank you.
Tags: homophobia, love, pedro zamora, united playaz
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