9.4.06

Immigration & Little League

You all know about wearing white on Monday, not purchasing anything, and being encouraged not to show up to work or school, right? I'm showing up to work because I'm a square like that, but I am wearing white and not purchasing anything (I must say, the purchasing thing will be difficult because I usually eat dinner w/ my co-worker & classmate because we have class on Monday night.)
Anyway, my sis and I were talking about this the other night because she was asking if I was going to any of the protests. It gets a little hairy because my commitment is to the kids not the education system. On our trip to "teacher happy camp," I had a conversation with one of the other fellow Latina teachers. She wasn't aware that there were only about four Latino teachers on staff and fewer African Americans. I think it really opened her eyes.
So when I think about it, I feel like I'm doing more by actually going to work. I submitted this week's headlining article with my lesson plans. I didn't get them back yet. We're still reading it on Monday, regardless.
On Monday, when I asked them to write about their weekend in their journal, A.T. told me all about opening day and getting the game ball. I asked about his team and what position he played. Friday a few minutes before the bell for the end of homeroom rang, he said, "Ms. will you go to my game later?"
At the end of the day, all I wanted was to come home and sleep. Since getting over my cold, I haven't had the sleeping effects of medicine and so I don't get to fall asleep until very late. Pair that up with feeling dizzy and weak b/c of the nasty salad the night before and you'll get one tired me who didn't want to go to this game.
However, Rachel Ray was making ballpark food, and I knew this kid would be waiting for me to show up, besides what's two hours. So come six o'clock, I headed toward the general direction of where he said his game would be. After weaving through some neighborhoods, I found the park.
I was a little shy about showing up. It's mostly parents that go to these things. How would I look showing up there. I don't even know this kid's parents. After watching the little girls eat ice cream as the jump on a trampoline in the backyard of the houses that lined one side of the park, I gained enough courage. The only thing I kept thinking was that I'd made a commitment to this kid.
After a couple plays, he saw me and alerted A.S., the pitcher and another one of my students, that I was in the stands. They both looked at me and smiled. Later, another one of my students came to the bleachers and looked as if he'd seen the most amazing thing in the world. "Ms. Baeza! What are you doing here?"
After I told him, I inquired about his game. He was playing after the game we were currently watching. I told him I'd stay to watch him too. As more of his teammates showed up, more kids asked his same question. They would go run around and come back to sit with me while I watched the game. When shocked kid's mom showed up, he whispered to her that I was there and that I would be staying to watch his game, too.
It was so nice to see them outside of school, doing the things they love. I felt like I do when I read their journals, honored, that they would share this part of their life with me.

4 comments:

Cracked Chancla said...

I think that's great that you went to their games. I'm sure it really meant a lot to them.

MsAbcMom said...

Yay for you! It is so hard sometimes to make more commitments to the kids outside of school. It really pays off though in so many ways.

Elenamary said...

I am so bad at phrasing disagreement without offending...and really my intent isn't to offend. I totally support your decesion to go to school. I do want to mention however (not sure how to do mention it with couth) that I think it is important in places where there are few Latino teachers to also support the work boycott because it makes others aware of the existence of immigrant supporters in all places and I think as Latinas in positions that we aren't frequently found that people often forget we are Latinas...does that make sense?

Freebird said...

Awww, that's so sweet.