When I was younger, I used to put myself down at every available opportunity. I did it in what I thought was witty and funny ways. I did it so much that it actually became a problem. I then found a girl that I really liked and a relationship developed. She wouldn’t let me put myself down anymore. I kept trying but she wouldn’t put up with it.
In teacher’s college, I was placed inside a great teacher’s classroom. He really challenged me to change as well. I first went into his classroom talking like I did in everyday life. He told me that as teachers we need to model good English and that it was important to do so. At the time, I thought he was just harping on me. He would actually count how many times I said, “gonna” in the course of a lesson instead of the proper “going to.” I tell you it was quite illuminating to see the ridiculous amount of tallies he showed me. I couldn’t believe it.
I tried to stop saying “gonna” in the classroom. I tried to stop putting myself down in other aspects of my life. Both my ex-girlfriend and my associate teacher helped me to do so. They wouldn’t put up with anything less. At the time, I absolutely hated it but now I can see that they did me a favour.
I don’t say “gonna” in the classroom anymore or “wanna” or “guys” or any other number of slang words and mispronunciations that many teachers seem to use. I want to thank my associate teacher for that. I don’t put myself down anymore either. I need to thank my ex-girlfriend for that.
Both of these people helped me better myself. I didn’t appreciate it at the time because it was hard. It was difficult for me to change. I didn’t want to change. But when I thought about it, it made so much sense. These things didn’t help me at all. They needed to go. And they did.
I couldn’t have done it by myself. I will forever be indebted to you both. I hope you know how much these two little things helped me. I want to thank anyone else who helped influence me in positive ways and to see a better side of myself. You might not know the good that you did for me. Those little things were not little at all. They were huge.