Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Now I'm Ready

Even though I have received some information about my contract, it still doesn't feel real to me.  I don't know where exactly I'll be located, I don't have a ticket, and I don't have anything specific that I can do right now to prepare.  Every time I tell someone about my future plans, they always ask me if I'm excited.  Well, yes, of course.  But there's more to it than that.

As I said in my first post, I was a little hesitant to apply for the program.  As a French major, it seemed like the "thing to do" after graduation, but I wasn't in a place in my life back then that I could commit to anything.  Now, I am ready for an experience that will be life-altering.  

In a Facebook group for 2011-2012 Assistants in France, I read comments that at times make me feel insecure.  Several assistants comment on how excited they are to teach and to use their French, even thinking of lesson plans already.  It makes sense, since this program is mostly aimed at people with the desire to go into education.  But that's not me.  I don't want to teach, and that is the least appealing part of this program to me.  I have never been a big fan of kids, and I have no idea how I'll be in a classroom.  I'm anxious to have to use my French because I'm so out of practice and I've always been very insecure about my speaking skills.

These were the main reasons that I wasn't previously wanting to commit to the program.  They say that once you apply, you are basically committing yourself, and I wasn't comfortable with making that sort of commitment if I wasn't 100% into it.

Then I realized, I will never be 100% into it.  I will never wake up one morning without any doubts or insecurities.  But last summer, I did realize that my life wasn't going where I wanted it to.  I needed to do something that would push me out of my comfort zone.  After reading my friend Courtney's blog about her experience as an assistant in Paris, I finally made the decision to do the assistantship, even if I wasn't absolutely positive about it.  

Now, I am more than ready for this experience.  I still don't want to teach, and I don't love the idea of working with little kids.  But that's why I think I should.  I wrote in my application that I wanted to be in a position that I could learn from the students and help them with something that will benefit them in their lives (learning another language).  I am depending on these little Martinicans to open my eyes and change my life in a fabulous way.  

Just replace this woman's face with mine...

Maybe to some people this doesn't sound like a great reason to be an English assistant.  But I am going into this with an open mind, ready for anything to be thrown my way.  My heart is in it for the right reasons, and I know that it will be an amazing experience in so many ways.  

If you want to read my short essay included in my application, please click here.