It has been an interesting week, in terms of my social mindset.
Class began on Tuesday, as I've mentioned. Last summer, there were two classes (about fifty people) going for elementary regular ed. We took classes at the college together and also had advisory sessions together. As we were all overwhelmed and stressed, we got to know each other and bond pretty well as a group. Well, starting in the fall semester, the two groups have been mixed into the college classes. So there are a few of my fellow Fellows that I haven't seen since last summer. Others, not since December, and a few not since May. Though the actual classes have not been very good, I've always loved just seeing them all, venting and bitching and trading stories and ideas. It's a pretty good comeraderie; that's the only good thing about the Fellows program, if you ask me.
So was looking forward to seeing my classmates, whoever they were. All of the folks in this program are friendly and obviously intelligent, just good people. The first afternoon back, we all said hi and talked about our years, but I was a bit surprised to see some of the old cliquishness back. Not out of malice or anything; like I said, these are nice people. It was clear that some of them have been keeping in touch outside of school, so they would naturally gravitate toward each other.
I just didn't expect to feel so much on the fringe of things. A few years ago, this situation would have me pouting, isolating myself, and instantly deciding they must all hate me and find me ridiculous and obnoxious. (Narcissist much?!) So we should all be proud that I did make an effort to join in, to talk to people, and pretend like I did belong. I usually tag along with some group in the time between classes. So far no one has shooed me away, or ignored at me, or laughed at me. Which is good. :) Pretending seems to be going okay.
Also, it has helped me chat with and further get to know some of the folks from the "other group" of last summer. I had lunch on Thursday with four very nice girls who I hadn't talked to much at all. They were friendly and included me, and it was fun. One of the girls lives in the next neighborhood over; she's the one I went to the movie with after class. Look at little me making some new friends!
Speaking of new friends, Nancy invited me to a dinner party on Friday, in (big, scary) Manhattan. I went and had such a great time. The other two girls were also teachers and like-minded, and were very nice to the "new girl."
On Saturday afternoon, my good friend Ms F had a wedding celebration on Long Island. I took the train out (noting all the good-looking young people in beach garb...), and had a pleasant time chatting with a few of my colleagues also in attendance and other people at the party. The food was good and the music was great; it was a fun time.
The rest of the evening and this morning, I hung out with another teacher friend, A, at her house nearby.
So I suppose that this post is here to remind myself that perhaps my new mantra should be, "Social is as social does." I do have a few people to call for plans if I want to make them. Things get complicated with me carless, but that's why we have trains and stuff.
In any case, I'm proud of me, and you should be too!