Friday, February 8, 2013

Wait...What JUST Happened?

Real life is certainly stranger than fiction sometimes. This week certainly proves that. 

First of all, the same day as my previous post, something amazing happened that gave me that self-esteem boost when it comes to my career choice.I wanted to come back and add it, but it didn't feel right after I blasted children's programming.

I'm at Circle K on Tuesday 2/5 (to the locals here in the QC: Yes, the ghetto one) and it's busy and crazy and I'm holding X-man who is being very much a 2 year old. 

Then a former student sees me and was so excited to see me. She was a junior the 2009-2010 year. Despite the chaos and Alexander trying to squirm free and letting the entire zip code know it, we chatted it up for a few seconds. As she was leaving, she was very forthcoming and said, "Thank you so much for everything you taught me. I am so grateful for the experience."
Chris always says I should go back to teaching when we move to Wickenburg and Alexander goes to Pre-school or Kindergarten. I still don't know. I probably have to go back to work, but part of me is hoping my little freelance art projects I have going on here will take off and I won't have to return to work.  

Yes, I know I'm a dreamer too.

I guess I'm very discouraged with the whole educational system. Sure, it's messed up everywhere in the country, but it's REALLY messed up here in Arizona.  It's not so much my paycheck that I am concerned about. If I could get the necessary supplies in my classroom and administrative support for supplies, the arts, and discipline support when it comes to students who are disrespectful and vandalize others art projects, then they can keep paying me next to nothing. 

However, when you have the whole package: No supplies for the classroom, no administrative support, the inmates running the asylum, a trend in the country that puts teachers on the guillotine, AND a tiny paycheck, it makes it unbearable and depressing.

Not only that, but when there is funding, it goes into a top heavy system that barely makes it into the classroom. And our lovely demographics around here don't value education and fear extra fees and taxes. Overrides and propositions to help schools are repeatedly voted down.  Sure, there are some exceptions, but the mantra here in Kookoozona, especially with the voters and those who work at the State Capitol, is "Just Say No to Education."  

There are problems all around with our system.

Plus, I can't find the "switch" to stop trying to save the world. I wanted to do too much as a teacher, and I burned out. Sure, I resigned at the end of the 2010-2011 year because I had Alexander. I know I would have stayed on if I didn't have him, but I still felt burned out.  

One thing this student (the one I ran into at Circle K) said was, "Don't worry about all the problems. It was a crappy school." Sure, it's a relief that others see that the problem was huge and much bigger than me. However, like I said, I put too much on my shoulders and I wanted to save the world - one art lesson and project at a time, and I am ineffective at finding the switch to shut off the "world saving worry".  

On a somewhat related note, a church leader once told me personally that I needed to give Christ my burdens. But I don't know how. Seriously, where is the switch? I know I can let Christ and His angels help me (this goes beyond just teaching), but I struggle at how to do that.

Moving on...
I completed another custom order and was all set to send it out.
Names and other Personal Details on this Work have been blurred and obscured for privacy reasons.

However, only the print will make it to the customer for the time being and the original is lost. I hope it's only lost temporarily. 

So what happened? It's one of those situations that is clearly stranger than fiction. I feel like I was in some kind of crazy movie or sit-com plot only meant to annoy and irritate. 

Wednesday 2/6, I park at the Post Office here in the QC with the original artwork to send off to the customer. I have Christian and Alexander with me. I had to get my X-man out of the car, so Christian was holding the Customs slip (it's a Canadian customer) and the package containing the original artwork. 

Christian closed the door to the car before I could grab the key and my purse after I took Alexander out of his car-seat. We were locked out. I didn't tell Christian that it was his fault. No need to make his anxiety worse. 

We only had the artwork with us. My phone was also in the car. Sadly, it’s not the old days where a simple wire hanger can unlock a car door. Sometimes advances in technology can really screw us over.

I borrowed a phone from a postal worker inside and called my friend (only to get her voice mail), so I then called Chris, knowing that he was at work, which is almost 100 miles away. I didn’t have other numbers memorized because they were on my contact list in my phone that was locked in the car. That is another detriment to advancing technology. If this had happened 20 years ago, or even 10 years ago, I'd have a lot of numbers memorized. Just an observation.

The “roadside assistance” info was in the glove box which was locked in the car and it’s not the AAA service that a lot of people use. It’s a lesser known service through our car insurance. Chris had that information, but I also had to pick up Mikelle from her after school activity in a half hour, so I had to leave the car there and try to borrow a car from someone and deal with the car issue later.

A nice lady overheard me on the phone when I was talking to my husband and she offered to take me and the boys home. We didn’t live far and I knew it was safe to go with her even though I didn’t know her.

I was so worried about picking up Mikelle, that I didn’t notice we left the original artwork in this nice woman's vehicle when she dropped us off at our house!!!
This About Sums it Up
Not knowing what I had done, we quickly got out and went over to my neighbor's house (hi Mindy!) where I could borrow her car to go pick up Mikelle.  I know I wouldn’t have forgotten the artwork if I wasn’t so pre-occupied with worrying about  my daughter being picked up.  It was when I was driving Mindy's vehicle to the school that I realized the artwork was left in the nice woman’s vehicle.

My heart sank.

I had no way to get a hold of this nice lady to get the artwork back. However, the Customs form with my address is with the work. She drove to my house once, and if she forgets where I live, my address is on the Customs slip and it’s on the return address on the package with the artwork. I am confident that she’ll bring it to me as soon as she notices. But she was in a big SUV. I don’t know when she’ll notice the stuff in the back.

I am so embarrassed about this and I am still having a hard time believing this as I write it. I am confident the artwork will make its way back to me, and then I’ll immediately turn around and send it to the customer. It’s just a matter of when.

Thankfully, I scan all my artwork. As soon as this happened, I immediately had a 20x20 color print made of the work. I sent that out yesterday, Thursday February 7th.

Still, the order was for a custom original and that is what the customer paid for.

I waited until yesterday to see if the nice lady would show up at my house. When she didn't and I had to send out the print of the original, I also had to bite the bullet and e-mail the customer. I told her the whole story. I also included an attachment of the above work, so she knows it was completed, what it looks like, and that I'm not full of excuses.  And whether or not the original makes its way back to me, I also assured my customer that she can have her next color original completely free. And it won’t be lost, either.

I am still having a hard time wrapping my head around it. It feels like a crazy plot line in an annoying movie or sit-com on TV. This order was already from a return customer and I really hope I haven't lost her business as a result of this.

And here we are - Friday. I'm not sure if I should be relieved or not. Still holding out hope that the artwork comes back home. 

I end this post with a picture of Newborn Platypuses. Is that how you say it? Platypuses? I'll quote George Takei: Are they chicks? pups? platypups?

Something this adorable and this weird really shows that there is hope for the future and that God has a sense of humor. God's sense of humor has been kind of mean to me with what happened on Thursday, but like I said before, humor is humor. 

1 comment:

  1. Oh no! I hope it turns up. I have a feeling it will, but the waiting and wondering would make me stress. Sorry.