No Job I'd Rather Be Doing

In my work I am what's called a special needs coordinator. I visit four child care centers every week and two home child care providers. There is no job I would rather be doing right now. I learn a lot. I am required to figure out how to deal with people. I am very confident, in certain areas, about working with my hands and being assured that the results will be excellent. The people stuff is a challenge. I am doing well. People are happy to see me when I walk through the door.

Last week I was at a center for the afternoon. "Jeanie," the teacher, has complained to me often about "Carmen" and her grandmother, "Eunice." Jeanie couldn't get why Eunice had a problem with Carmen being required to call her "Miss Jeanie." Carmen brought it up. She looked at the both of them and said, "Why do I have to call you Miss Jeanie?" She left the classroom to go play. Jeanie looked at me. I looked at her. Eunice looked at me. I looked at her. They decided it was safe to talk. So Eunice talked about what it was like being African-American and dealing with racism in her white teachers in school, and Jeanie talked about growing up in a small town in Minnesota. It was heated at first. Then they started really listening to each other. At one point I said that all of us white folks have racism and Eunice said to Jeanie, "That doesn't mean I want my grandchildren walking all over you." They kept talking. Then I just said, "Well Jeanie, would you be okay with Carmen just calling you Jeanie?" She said, "Yes, that would be okay." They went on to talk about some other things concerning Carmen in a very friendly, cooperative manner.

I was so pleased. Life just doesn't get any better than that -- seeing two women figure something out right in front of my eyes.

J.B.
Minnesota, USA


Last modified: 2015-07-21 10:05:01-07