Tuesday, December 21, 2004
It all started because I let a kid come to my class while another class was showing a Christmas movie. I think I responded, when asked, "Sure. We aren’t doing anything Christmas-y. I don’t really celebrate Christmas.
Sometimes I forget where I live. This is a very religious community. They not only pray in school, they do all kinds of things that make me a bit uncomfortable. The other day, when I was complaining about a certain student, the teacher I was talking to shook her head calmly, smiled, and whispered, "Just picture the cross behind them. Like Jesus Christ. You can't be mad at a child who hangs on the cross with Jesus!" Disquieting image, if you ask me.
When I said that I didn’t celebrate Christmas, I didn’t mean it in a non-Christian/ Jewish/ Jehovah’s Witness kind of way. I just meant that I don’t really get into the season much, don’t have kids coloring reindeer or writing poems about snow. It wasn’t a big deal in my family. And this year I’m not going home for Christmas at all, so I am especially not into it.
But now everyone here thinks I worship the devil or something. At least four people have asked me why I don’t celebrate Christmas. I told one woman, "I just don’t. It isn’t a big deal or anything." She replied, sadly, "You may not think so. You may not think so." Then she shook her head and walked away. (An aside: Why is it that so many things these folks say are so cryptic? I don’t understand half of what they tell me. Is this a Southern thing?)
And now all the other teachers are sending their Jehovah’s Witness kids to me, as well—which if fine, but kind of funny, too. My room has become the haven for all kids of non-Christian persuasion. I certainly don’t mind that. I am starting to mind everyone acting like I am going to hell for not celebrating a religious holiday in my state-run school, though.
¶ 6:26 AM