So, on Thursday I'm off to give my second annual guest lecture(s) for some Early Childhood Education classes at one of the local universities. I did three of them last year as well, and I've revamped and updated it a bit. But it's still nerve-wracking. More than it might be if I was just going in to do a lecture on some other random topic I've been working on. Nerve wracking a bit, because it's, well, my life - and my kids' lives - that I'm going to talk to them about. Yes - there's some good old theory involved. Yes, it's a lecture. But it also feels like a whole lot more than that. And much more vulnerable-making.
Last year, I had one pretty great class response, one reasonably good class response, and then one shit-assed class response (which admittedly was marred by one very, very vocal objector). Students were, on the whole, receptive and responsive. But that one very, very vocal objector objected in a way that was mildly venomous. And when she said over and over again that she didn't see why she should have to make exceptions for those kinds of kids, what I heard was (and also a part of what she was saying) was that she didn't see why she should have to go out of her way for my kids.
And when you hear things like that, spoken in reference to ones' children, when one has gone out on a limb and gotten a bit vulnerable to speak about their experiences, the growly-mama-bear (she's fucking fierce - I don't recommend messing with her) in me made it exceedingly difficult not to leap out of my chair and kill her (all Lindsay Lohan in Mean Girls style). You will all be relieved to hear that I did *not* kill her (or even just slightly maim her), though I did perhaps quietly note, after listening as calmly as I could to a very long homo and trans phobic diatribe, that she might be better off in the Catholic school system. (Um, ooooops). I will endeavour to quell the mama bear this go-round.