05 October 2009

A Full Moon Follows a Dull Day

Today I wasn't feeling particularly energetic. At least I took a walk of about a mile before I went to work.

The weird thing is that now, at home, I have more energy than I did earlier in the day. Maybe it has to do with the cool-turning-chilly breeze fluttering, then rippling, the curtains by my desk. It may also have to do with the clouds drifting in halos of reflected moonlight and somehow just missing the full moon. Yes, an early-autumn full moon: In its silver iridescence, like lightning turned inside out, turns a walk into a dance as elegant and mysterious as a silhouette.

Soon I must go to the ocean. I haven't been there in months, and not at all during the summer. This time of year is when I most love the sea and to walk in or ride along beaches. If I could swim now, the water probably would be fine. At Sandy Hook, New Jersey, which is about an hour southwest of the Rockaways, I immersed myself in the Atlantic tides one Thanksgiving weekend. The weather had been mild, but not unusually warm, as I recall. And the sea, although cold enough to pimple my skin, still was warmer than I'd expected.

The sea under the full moon: Now there's my element. When I think of moving to Colorado, I remember that I'd be about 1500 miles from the nearest ocean. Then, of course, there is the matter of getting a job.

About the only kind of job you can get in Trinidad is as a nurse. Funny that I was thinking about that on the subway when I saw a young woman wearing a jacket with a crest from the University of Pennsylvania's Nursing and Midwifery Program. I asked her about it; she said it's a graduate program and that she'd done her undergraduate science courses in the City University system of New York.

I think of the work that Marci and Jennifer do and how fortunate I am to have been able to experience it. Most other trans people don't find that kind of care, in part because so few people can provide it. They both tell me that what I'm doing is wonderful and that I'm a beautiful person. But what is my work next to theirs? Marci performs miracles--or, at least, she performed one on me. And Jennifer helps people to keep those miracles going. Next to their work, how necessary is what I do? I mean, what I did in class could have been done by thousands, if not millions, of other people.

In other words, those students didn't need me to accomplish whatever they wanted to accomplish. The two classes I taught today were sections of the Research writing class. It's not as if I can offer them anything special in such a class. But if I were a nurse or some other sort of health professional, I could offer trans and other kinds of people care that they may never have found otherwise.

Is that a realistic idea? Or just another full moon rumination?

1 comment:

EdMcGon said...

You do present an intriguing question: How important is classroom learning?

Just speaking for myself, give me a good reference material (i.e. book or website), tell me what you need done, and I can do it. But I know everyone isn't that way.

However, I think more theoretical/philosophical topics do require classroom education, simply because there are multiple views which all have their merits, and even I can gain from hearing the views of others, even when I don't agree with them.