Wednesday, March 9, 2011

I think I just miss Brian

I've been horrifically un-fun these past few days. This morning when I went into my vice-principal's office to ask her a question, she immediately asked if I had been crying. I actually hadn't been, but the fact that my expression permanently looks like someone who has been recently sobbing certainly isn't good.

I think it's because I miss Brian.

No really.

I know my last post was a delightful mess of "woe-is-me" for other reasons, but today it occurred to me that my life simply isn't as good without Brian. Thus, I created excuses to see him, um, all day. The thing I like most about that little bugger is that every time he sees me, he sprints across the room and climbs up me like a little Asian monkey, then he clutches onto me like his life depends on it. He whispers to me about how I'm his favorite teacher and how he wishes he could come be in my new class, and he shouts "MISS NIKKI!" down the hall whenever he catches a glimpse of me walking away. When the busses were loading this afternoon, he grabbed the hands of two of my new students who happen to be on his shuttle, and he guided them around the gym because "they are Miss Nikki's girls, so they are my girls." (He could just be a little ladies' man in training, but I prefer to think he does it because he adores me.) As he and his two girlfriends headed out to the bus, I heard him scream my name down the hall. Our new principal's name is Nicky, so she assumed he was saying goodbye to her. Oh, no. "Not you! Where is my Miss Nikki?! Goodbyeeeeeeeee, Miss Nikki!"

In all seriousness though, I've been particularly whiny these past few days, and I just can't seem to quiet all the hateful sounds in my head. You don't have to worry about sending me to therapy; they're not audible voices. Just your average, run-of-the-mill self-deprecating thoughts. I know I'm not the only one who can't control the onslaught once the floodgates are open, and suddenly I'm convinced I'm a failure at absolutely everything.

You weren't good enough for him, and you'll never be good enough for anyone.
You're an awful kindergarten teacher.
Those pants fit just fine two weeks ago, fatty.
The kids wouldn't be falling asleep if you knew what you were doing.
No one cares if you're sad. Stop whining.
You're a hypocrite. No one's fooled.

Then, of course, I get the one that is the worst kick in the stomach when you're already down:

You really couldn't be any more self-centered. Look at you, only thinking of your own pathetic life.

Fun, right? The thing is, I know all these things are lies. I'm actually a really good kindergarten teacher, I haven't gained any weight, and one guy not wanting to date me doesn't mean I should go out and buy a few dozen cats. Compared to almost every inanimate object, I'm hilarious and charming, and my karaoke skills are probably going to get me a spot on next season's American Idol. There are tons of good things about me (I can think of at least two - no, three! - off the top of my head), but I feel ridiculously vain writing them out.

On a related note, the next article I'm working on for Relevant is about how hating yourself doesn't make you humble, and that it's okay to think you're likable. It's going to basically be a letter to myself, but I'd venture I'm not the only one in the world who struggles with this.

On an unrelated note, my new littles are rough around the edges. I thought the other teachers were exaggerating when they said my babies wouldn't be able to hold pencils or pull their own pants up in the bathroom, but it's all gloriously true. Today while I was reading my kids a story, Rachel burst into tears. She's cried a few times, so I fought rolling my eyes as I jumped out of my chair to console her. I asked what happened, and she showed me her hand. There were tiny teeth prints in it, so I asked who bit her. She pointed to herself. She - bit - herself. Read that again, slowly. She - bit - herself, then sobbed uncontrollably. Uh, what?

Oh and here's a good story: yesterday afternoon, one of the parents brought me a present. This happens a lot; the parents here think you'll like their kids more if they bring you expensive, jewel-filled pens. When the mom handed me the present, though, I realized it said "from Nikki Teacher" on it, instead of "for." I made the politest confused face I could, and she explained that I was to give it to her son as a welcome to the class. Therefore, I had to make a huge scene to present this little boy with some kind of game I couldn't read, which he promptly tossed aside, telepathically telling me to try harder next time. I wonder if there's just no word for "spoiled" in Korean?


  1. I stumbled on your blog on accident (googling "facial piercing in korea" brings up your blog on the first page) and it's just crazy because I'm from Centerville, Ohio, not far from where you're from and I was thinking about teaching English in Korea after I graduate next year.

    It sounds like you've been having a hard time lately so I hope everything begins to work out for you.

  2. She's not having a hard time, she's just epically whiny. I am kidding! I love this kid. She is my kid actually. :) I told you Nikki, my love, it's ok to not like something or to be unsure of yourself in a new job. This does not make you a "bad" person and or teacher. I love that you have found a creative way to get it all out. I love your blog. I love you. Now dust your knees, grab some M&Ms (because you are not a fatty) and just keep smiling.