I've said it many times before (and I know there are many of my online friends who find it hard to believe) that I am pretty shy in real life. I don't make small talk well and in groups with people I don't know I tend to be very quiet and reserved. It can often be mistaken for being snobbish or stuck up.
But when it comes to my work I am pretty good. I meet strangers all the time and in essence, make a job of selling myself to these strangers. "Hi, you don't know me from Adam but please trust me and my skills enough to leave your child in my care"
I'm pretty good at that because I have confidence in my skills and my abilities as an Early Childhood Educator, I'm passionate about my work and though I sometimes get worn out, I'm not anywhere near burn out. (which is great considering this is a high 'burn out' profession.)
So going back to school has been a challenge for me. I'm in an uncomfortable social situation, talking with people I don't know but we do all have on thing in common, we are all ECE's which gives me that little bit of confidence because when all else fails, I can talk shop talk all day long.
I've been stressing since the first day of class because there is an assignment that requires a partner. So, I'm forced to pair up with a stranger and though it's work related it's still an awkward social situation for me. So since the first day I've class I've scoped out my classmates, observing, making some chit chat and trying to figure out who I'd like to potentially pair up with. I had three people in my class of 16 in mind. The first I knew was a no go because she's in the class with a colleague. Chances are, they'll work together. The other two are both new to the course, like me and either one seemed like they were the type I could work with, smart, enthusiastic but not overbearing. But then it happened. After the first class the two I had put on my mental 'possibly' list exchanged phone numbers and email addys. So I was back to square one.
There was another girl, she sits in front of me. I want to slap her. She spent the second class doing the following; gluing on a broken acrylic nail, powdering her nose, texting a friend, complaining that she hated power point presentations and arguing with the class about how a supervisor handled an issue with two staff members when it was clear that she was on the only one who felt it was handled wrong. One word comes to mind when I think of this girl. Bubble. I don't want her as a partner because A: I'll pull my frigging hair out and B: I suspect I'd get all control freak and do it all myself.
So last night in class one of the girls from my initial group of maybes sat next to me. We chatted (yep, I made small talk!) and we went through class.
As we were getting packed up to head out for the night she said to me "Do you have partner for assignment 3 yet?" I said, "No, not yet." She said "Want to be partners?"
It's like not getting picked last in gym class. Not only do I have a partner for my assignment but it was one of the ones on my possibly list. Woot! And now, I can be less anxious about my class. All my ducks are in a row. And I'm loving it.