Friday, March 22, 2013

The Challenges of Life: Stepping Up To The Plate & Not Giving Up

Many people in this world fall victim to complacency within their lives, and within their place in society.  They simply fall victim to their own mindset, and societies view on them.  Every once in a while someone walks into their lives and shows them that they really know very little at all about themselves and the things they once thought they knew.  This happened to me yesterday when a friend of mine, who is a junior physics major at a university close to my home in South Jersey, came to my house to hang out and just talk with a white board infront of us.  We both took turns showing each other what we've been working on and thinking about though he has more physical and academic results than I do for he has credibility in this world and i do not.  We worked together through an internship this summer at our fathers' job at the Millville Airport, more specifically a company called Dallas AirMotive.  My father is a Jet Engine Mechanic who works on corporate aircraft such as SPEY's, TAY's, PT-6'S, JT-15's, and so on while my friend's father run's the business side of the equation, but once was a mechanic himself.  We spent day's working on different upgrade projects throughout the plant, but we had plenty of time to discuss life, philosophy, and of course physics.  He has a very mathematical and hands on mindset, while I see more pictures and concepts from reading books and I have the ability to learn things once and never forget them(people are envious of me for this gift, and sometimes I wish I never had it).  The information I get from reading is turned into pictures and concepts in my brain which lead onto other ideas, while he dives into his math and physics courses.  We sat down yesterday, and chatted for a few hours on topics in physics and philosophy, he made things very clear to me as some people do, my mind is wondering off further than my mathematical background has progressed.  Here is my story that i've learned:

My mathematical career started off great, i had gotten all A's and B's in mathematics until 10th grade when I took Geometry.  While going to public school, you learn that not all people in school actually care about learning, which was quite the shock for me.  Even though I loved socializing I always knew that an education was the only way to get anywhere in life.  Geometry for the most part was pretty fundamental and easy, but certain things were a little difficult to understand, and if the teacher knew enough and understood the math enough, they could easily explain it someone and anyone.  My teacher was just like her students, and would rather gossip with students than teach.  In certain situations an concepts, I would challenge her authority, and say "please show that again, you’re not making any sense."  She took that as blatant criticism, while I was just being honest with the woman that I could not understand the way she was teaching the concepts and principles.  A good teacher from my experiences as a substitute, is one that can break things down in a variety of different ways, so that each student can learn the material in a way that complements them as an individual.  This takes a serious amount of patience which not all people have, but if one is to teach in such an environment, one must learn to have a patient mindset.  As the year went on, she started making fun of me just as the other students had done because she just thought I was just some punk who was trying to be funny, but I seriously just wanted help(her perception of me was wrong).  I was called Harry Potter for I wore glasses and had long hair, and was a bit delinquent in my physical development.  The teacher also spent more time selling her daughter's Girl Scout cookies than teaching mathematics.  This immaturity of my classmates and the teacher drove me to hate math, and life in general.  As a result, I gave up on the subject, and really life in general after sophomore year because of the cruelty and immaturity of people.  The next year i went back to Algebra 2 which was extremely easy for me, but once again most of the class could care less about the subject.  The teacher always asked me why I don't try harder because you’re so smart Sean, you actually get it while no one else does.  I simply would lie and say why does any of this matter? But, in my head pictures of sophomore Year kept on popping up in my head.

 Nowadays, I am 23 years old, spending day and night learning all the math I missed out in high school because of the fact that people are so cruel and immature.  My ideas are way above the mathematics in which I know.  I am on a slow, strenous process towards learning complex mathematics due to my teenage years of being beaten down because of others immaturity.  Sometimes my mind fights itself all the time on whether to give up on a dream that makes me so happy to chase, or to become that complacent individual who just fits in like 1 piece of the 7 billion piece puzzle we call mankind.  Can I be the digital and analogous piece all at the same time.  All I know is, I never again will give up on something I care so deeply about, and that is life, the universe, and my role as a human being in the whole scheme of things even if I am the only person that will listen to my own thoughts.  If you do not believe in yourself, who else will believe in you? 

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