Yesterday (12th June 2013), I received a letter from National Institute of Education, Singapore regarding the Teacher’s Investiture Ceremony.
Yes, I have graduated (yet again) from a tertiary institution in Singapore. I have never considered myself as a successful product of Singapore educational system. In fact, life as a full time student was a constant struggle. To date, I have been one for the past 17 years of my life starting at the age of 7. I’ve only worked full time for 4 years. (Do the Maths yourself if you are interested to find out how old am I).
It has always been my style to shun graduation ceremony if I could help it. Yea, it’s a good time to catch up with classmates whom you do not keep in constant contact. However, I dislike the long speeches by the people up on stage whom I know I will only be half listening. Call me rebellious, whatever. As ironic as it sounds, I do not chase paper AKA paper qualifications. I have the knowledge inside me. It is something powerful that others cannot take it away. That to me is suffice.
Say one day, if my house got burnt down, the first thing that I would do is to grab my phone and call the fire station and run the hell outta there. Would I care about the certs? Would I have the time? The answer is clearly, no. With the papers burnt, I’m still alive. The knowledge that I acquired stays with me. Therefore, when I saw the letter with the word ‘compulsory attendance” emblazon into my eyes, I told myself “Not again?!”
When I realised that I have to make this trip down a month ago, I was very adamant that I should not my break my ritual of not turning up for graduation ceremony. However, today, on a second thought, I realised that I should. I still firmly stick to my stand that I do not chase paper. But rather this is a way for me to show my appreciation.
Up till the present moment, life with my current employer have been rather smooth sailing. This is something that comes as a surprise to me. In MOE (Ministry of Education), I’ve learnt more about appreciation than anytime in my entire life. I’ve also learnt about gratitude. I can truly say that NIE (National Institute of Education) and working in a school environment, really made an impact in my life.
I got in fashion because I felt that back then, I have no other options. And fashion was the only thing I knew or thought I knew. While life was never really happy, I do not hate it. It does gives me the satisfaction I craved for. I do not say that I wasted the time I had spent in it because it made me who I am today. While I do not enjoy working in the Fashion Industry, I enjoy it as a hobby. Sewing still gives me the sense of satisfaction and I am grateful for all these skills I have acquire over time. While I have not official usage of them, they do come in handy as and when I needed them. I have never given up fashion and I never will for it is still a part of me.
I remembered once when I was in Secondary four, my Chinese teacher (yes I speak Mandarin) asked what we aspire to do. Teaching has never been my cup of tea. I never detest it, however I just thought that it was horrible to teach a bunch of naughty children. My answer was to publish my own writing, which is one of the reason why I blog.
Coming thus far, it has been an enjoyable journey and I am very grateful for what I had learnt in NIE. Therefore, as I was showering today, I thought that I will invite my previous Principal and my practicum supervisor to the ceremony to show my appreciation. The kindness they have shown to newbie whom they hardly knew. As I was posted to another school, I was once again been blessed by a very nice Principal.
All in all, I am truly filled with gratitude and appreciation of the unfolding of events. Thank you Mdm. Bala, thank you Betty.
This tree represents the stage I am in now, bald and dry. As I embark on the next stage of the journey, I hope that the tree will start growing out the leaves which signifies my own growth as well.
I am a Special Education Teacher.