PLAIN AND SIMPLE| Stories about students

I CAN’T seem to be detached reading stories written by students. Some are heart-warming; others, heart-breaking. They’re so human.

I have taught all my life since I graduated college from the same school my publisher, Sec Jess Dureza and our President graduated – Cor Jesu Colleged which used to be Holy Cross of Digos College.

I have read my students’ stories, either about their life or about others that touched them. I tried to be hard with their stories – just looking at their technical structures and other devices to achieve a well-organized article.

But the more I tried to be detached, the more I am affected by their poignant stories. It really is not about checking their papers or reading their stories that is hard in teaching. It is the emotions attached to it that makes it harder. It grips your heart.

One story is about my student sick with cancer. In the class, she is so bubbly and so spirited. She is one student you want to be in your class. No worries, or so I thought.

But when one student wrote about her story, I hardened in disbelief. Misty-eyed, I observed her in the class. Only I, her friend and herself knew that she was sick with cancer.

In her story, written by her friend, she said she could not afford to be sad. Her days are numbered and she was asked by her doctor not to go to school. It may tire her.

But she goes to school. No cancer can stop her. If it’s her time, then it is her time. But she was not paralyzed by this sickness out to cripple her. No she said, she will faithfully to go to school and live her life the best she could, normally.

Another story makes me angry. At 13, she was raped by a man close to her. She could not scream because she was threatened.  But time heals, and she has forgiven the rapist.

She is doing well in class and she wants to be successful in life. This looks easy, but I am sure she needs healing – true healing. Psychologists will tell you, the trauma of that experience remains there in her being.

I don’t know, but I don’t want to analyze. The anger or forgiveness is so real in me being her teacher.

There are about 30 students in my class. So this means 30 different stories. This makes it harder since I have to know each of them. There are one or two of them, you can’t understand. But when you read their stories, you will know why.

One of them is a graduate of an engineering course in Manila. He worked here as one of the managers of a call center. But since he has so many vacant time, he enrolled in my class.

No wonder he was artculate. He is one whom you want to be in your class. It makes your classes easy.

Ah, stories of these young people. Life in many forms reveals itself through the many faces of these students. Imagine, the stories of the millions of our people and one or two leaders will try to understand each!

Each one is really a story. And I his or her teacher should reach out and  understand.

Posted in Opinion