I have talked about my teachers before, two in particular that I found to be pretty weird, my Database Management professor and my Modern British Literature professor. Recently I discovered that my English professor and I have a lot in common.
A few weeks ago when I walked into class there was a note on the chalkboard. It was from a teacher letting us know that my professor was going to be late to class by about twenty minutes. Surprisingly, the whole class stayed even though we technically did not have to. When she walked in, it was obvious she was frazzled, that she had been through some sort of ordeal. Before starting class she apologized and that was the end of it, or so I thought. About halfway through the remaining class time, she paused and looked around the room. She begun to tell us the real reason she was late, something she did not plan on telling us.
She thought we deserved to know though and so she told us about how she had been having a really bad anxiety attack and could not leave her office. So while we were ‘kindly’ waiting for her, she was being coaxed out of her office by other professors in the department.
This past week, she shared more about her struggles with anxiety.
Like myself, she was quiet through school and college, hardly saying a word in classes. Because of that experience she is able to tell who is shy, who is very shy, and who just does not care about the class.
She gives me hope for my future. She is a glittering, explosive example of a shy, quiet, anxious person who didn’t let that stop her from following her dreams and pursuing her interests. At this point in my life, I had really begun to question whether I would be able to hold a job and succeed while having bad anxiety. Her presence in my life has proven that it is possible, you just have to really want it.
I never would have guessed that she had some of the problems I have. She is always really loud and impromptu in class, bursting into song, dance, and quotes at a moments notice. I really admire the fact that she is able to get in front of young adults daily and give lectures without letting her students see how much she is struggling to prevent the crippling anxiety from holding her down. I admire her and her strength. There is so much that people can learn from her that isn’t English related. So even though she talks until long after the class is supposed to end, her passion for sharing her knowledge with students, and her love of English makes it all worth it.
Because how often is it that you find a professor who loves what she does so much that she sends out emails to apologize when she thinks the class went badly? Even though it was an awesome and insightful class in your eyes. The answer is, you don’t.