Bittersweet Symphony

So Degrassi did it. A popular character committed suicide. I finally re-watched the episode. It was tough and I still have tears drying in my face. I’ve invested a lot n these characters, much in the way I have when I’ve had students who are open.

I am very well acquainted with death, suicide and all that. My high school existence/ experience probably wasn’t as bad as I remember it, but I don’t want to open the coffins that I’ve buried those memories in. As I’ve dealt with more and more types of students, I’ve noticed it’s school isn’t as it was for me, and the skills we need to adapt aren’t ever fully comprehensible because who knows what we have to adapt to. Really, what I mean to say is, everything is different for everyone, and the worst we can do is forget that. Some people can travel miles on the road, and for some the body or the mind just “can’t.”

I’m learning what kind of educator I want to be. I realize a different skill or pet peeve everyday. From my frustrations, I see that I hope my legacy will not be that some kid recalls that I taught him or her how to do such and such, but rather that they can do such and such and without having to recall. That such and such isn’t a problem. That it is second nature.
I’d rather be there for my students as someone effective, progressive, challenging and ultimately someone they understood wasn’t doing it for just a paycheck (even if that is what it feels like right now.). I have an interest in improving the world for them and showing them something more than Pelham Parkway, or the blocks of city South of where their school is. I wish to make them anlittle more considerate of their siblings who look up to them or to the casual 2, , A of whatever train they plan on terrorizing on the way home.

A student in California also name Campbell also committed suicide. Sad right. A page right out of Degrassi.
Life and art align or imitate each other and it’s sad. The hardest part of life is living it, and moving on when people don’t. I certainly haven’t gotten most things right. And I’m certain I’m probably going to get a helluva lot more wrong. Different pathways for different people,

But back to Degrassi…..
The Two parts of the episodes were not directly too hard to understand but are hard to forget.That is, the characters all suffered through some part of the grief cycle. Dallas, the hockey captain, felt anger with himself for pushing Cam to hard. Maya, Cam’s girlfriend, spent most of the second part in shock. Her pain was palpable when she pondered “When are people going to stop looking at me as the girlfriend of the kid who killed himself.” The actors did a fantastic job, and I could, as I can always- see this episode as a sounding board for the topic in advisory or home room. Some of these episodes are Public Service Announcements. And while the idea is “corny”. PSA ‘s really do reach some people.

All of this is convoluted and dense I know, but I just spent some time mourning a tv show character and a few of my friends I’ve lost on broken roads. But we go on until we can’t right?

[Chester Kent]

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