Living, Loving, and Learning: Buscaglia ReflectionWhile reading Leo Buscaglia’s book, Living, Loving ; Learning, I wasable to reflect back on some of the experiences I have had in my life that havehelped to make me the person I am today, and I was able to look into the futureat what I would like to become. I was able to see how well I know myself andwhat I have to offer others. I was able to see the things I don’t like aboutmyself and determine some of the ways I can make myself better.
This is some ofwhat reflecting on my life and looking ahead while reading Buscaglia has taughtme. A. “You Cannot give to anybody what you do not have. “I went to Juab High School in the small town of Nephi, Utah.
Likemany other small town high schools, football coaches and P. E. teachers doubledas Algebra teachers and Science teachers. This allowed our school to make fulluse of the limited teachers and resources that it had.Order now
There was a lot oftalented people that taught at Juab and some of them made great teachers andcoaches, but some of them didn’t. Sometimes it ended up that the footballcoach/algebra teacher cared a little more about tomorrow’s football game than hedid about ensuring his algebra students knew how to balance equations, andsometimes the P. E. /Science teacher cared a little more about the teaching thetennis unit than she did about teaching the four life processes.
Those teachers were also the ones that had to relearn the algebra andscience lessons a few days before they taught them to us, because on paper theywere qualified to do the job, but as far as knowing the material and having aninterest in what they were trying to give to us, nothing was there. Have youever tried to get someone excited about a subject that you knew nothing about?Have you ever had a math teacher that sent you across the hall to get help fromsomeone else because he didn’t understand what he was trying to teach you? Itcan be pretty hard sometimes to get excited about something if your teacherdoesn’t get excited about it. These teachers tried to give us something thatthey didn’t have. When I was in middle school I had another teacher that tried to giveus what she didn’t have. She was the health teacher, but because of someaddictions to drugs, she really wasn’t very healthy.
It was sad, because shetaught us from the book that certain drugs are addictive and we should take careof our bodies. We knew that she knew this information first hand because shewas always on drugs. Many days she was so buzzed up that the teacher next doorwould come ask her to hold it down because she was yelling instead of speakingand didn’t even know it. Other days she would fall asleep on her desk while wewatched whatever we wanted to on TV. There was more than one time when thestapler ended up in the garbage when the bell rang and woke her up! We alllearned how drugs can mess people up because we saw her every day, but I wonderhow valuable she thought the lesson would be to us because it was something sheobviously didn’t believe in? “You cannot give to someone what you do not haveyourself.
“Buscaglia makes over and over the point that knowledge and loveare both things that we can gain and gain, yet we are able to share them withothers without ever depleting our own supply. Because as teachers we need tohave the skills to teach our children to love themselves and to become the bestthey can be, I think it is so important that we dedicate the time that we havefor living, to loving and learning. I am going to become the best Valerie thatI can be, because then I can give others the knowledge and the love to becomethe best Johns, Kates and Ashleys that they can be. B.
Risk TakingBuscaglia tells us the importance of being ourselves. For me,sometimes being myself means taking a risk. All of us have our own littleviews of what we think others see as being “normal,” and we all have innatetendencies to try to either fit into the category of normalcy or to totally goagainst what the crowd is doing just to be different. I lived in Salt Lake for one month. At the restaurant where Iworked there was a wide variety of people. One of my friends had a mild case ofschizophrenia and was haunted by his inability to deal with reality.
If he wentinto the grocery store and saw a group of people laughing and joking, heautomatically thought that they were laughing at him. As a result of hisparanoia, he had a hard time making close friends and as a result of that madehimself an easy target for peer pressure. He would do anything at all to feelaccepted by others, simply because he wanted so much to be what he viewed asnormal. Another guy I worked with there seemed like your average everydayJoe. . .
UNTIL one day I saw him when he wasn’t at work. He had rings in severalparts of his body, and was wearing a great deal of hardware over his leatherclothes. I barely recognized him! I said “Mac! Is that you?”He started laughing at me and said, “You should have seen me before Igot my job. I used to have a blue Mohawk!” When I asked him why he dressedthat way and had blue hair he simply replied, “just to be different. “I’m not so sure that making ourselves a target for peer pressure orhaving blue hair and a pierced upper lip is what Buscaglia meant when he said weshould take risks.
I think more of what he was getting at, is that we need tobe ourselves. We need to stop wondering whether those around us see us as beingextremely odd or as just a part of the crowd. We need to be ourselves. Ifbeing yourself means you feel like going out and dancing in the rain once in awhile, you should do it! And if being yourself means you feel like singing asong at the top of our lungs as you walk down the street, you should do thattoo! And if standing on your head while facing the rear of the elevator is whatyou’ve always wanted to do, by golly, just make sure that you’re not going tofall on the 12 people in there that are acting normal. We just need to rememberto be ourselves!One of the biggest risks I have ever taken has ended up being one ofthe best things that has happened to me in my life. My brother-in-law met afamily in Indiana when he served his mission there a few years ago.
When thatfamily came to visit this year, I was invited to go swimming with the group. Itend to hide my true self when there’s a cute member of the opposite sex atstake, and I wasn’t so sure that I wanted to risk letting Issac see the real me. After all, there was a very good chance that he might not view me as being quitenormal! But I decided to let the real him give the real me a chance. BeforeIssac went home the next day we were the best of friends.
Now, thanks toUnited States Postal Service, AT;T, and Delta Airlines, Issac is engaged tospend the eternities with the real me. I sure am glad I decided to be myself. C. “Love is the process of leading you gently back to yourself.
“To me, love means serving others. We love those whom we serve. Babies are so helpless. They rely on others for everything that they need, andsometimes their little wants and cries can be very demanding. But have you everseen an infant and his mother interact? A crying infant may begin to smile,simply from hearing his mother’s calming voice. The mother reacts to the smilewith more talk and a smile of her own.
As they give and take their cues fromeach other, the mother and her child communicate and form loving bonds throughfulfilling each other’s physical and emotional needs. I had the opportunity to work with some of the students enrolled inSpecial Education at my high school. The first term that I did this, my job wasto help a student frost sugar cookies to be sold in the school bookstore. Whata challenge! Each day this beautiful girl had to be retaught how to scoop theicing onto the cookie and how to spread it around so that in the end, the cookiesomewhat resembled something edible. It was not an easy task for her. She wasoften angry with herself because she couldn’t remembered from the days before,and at first it embarrassed her that she needed any help from me to do her work.
But with a little patience from each of us, and some casual conversation whilewe worked, the task suddenly wasn’t so difficult for either of us anymore. Sherealized that I was there to help her and to be her friend, and I realized howmuch I had to learn from this courageous person. As I gave her encouragementand friendship, she began to remember what she was doing from day to day and toshow more pride in her work. This let me know I was doing an o. k.
job with herand allowed me to feel good about myself. As we served each other we grew tolove each other. Whether it is raking leaves for the neighbors or teaching achild to read, those whom we serve are going to know that they are someone whois important, as will we when we serve them. By giving service, we have ledsomeone back to themselves.
We have given love. D. ChangeBuscaglia talks a lot about making changes. We cannot progressif we do not take the necessary steps to making changes in our lives.
It isthrough examining our lives, determining what we do and do not like, and thenworking hard to make the changes necessary to become better. Change is notsomething that happens over night, but must be worked at continually in order tomake the change become a long lasting one. When I was a little girl, I had the bad habit of biting my fingernails. Sometimes I would chew them so far down that they would become very sore andsometimes even infected. My older sister Kathy had long, beautiful nails that Iwas pretty envious of, and I decided that I was going to have fingernails justlike that. It took a LOT of will power not to bite my fingernails ( though nowlooking back I’m not sure why I enjoyed chewing them so much!), but finally Iwas able to stop.
My nails grew very slowly at first, and were extremelybrittle, but eventually they grew to be strong and healthy. I was pretty proudof myself and made sure that my entire family knew what a good job I had doneand how beautiful they were. My sister Angie, then also a biter of nails, gottired of hearing about it awfully fast! One night, with the assistance of Kathywho was just out for the adventure of it all, Angela cut all of my fingernailswhile I was asleep in order to teach me not to brag! I decided that unless Iwanted to lose my hair next, which grew much faster than Angela’s and I madesure she knew it, bragging had better be the next change that I make in my life. Through the years I have made several changes when I have seensomething about myself I didn’t like. When I read Buscaglia, I took the littlelook at my life again and set goals to make some changes. One of them was tostop arguing with my older sister Allison.
I don’t know how feasible it is tomake such a goal, but I decided I’d make an extra effort. The fact that I’veset the same goal not to argue with her a hundred or more times previously isjust proof that change takes a continuous effort, not just one event, in orderto make the efforts effective and make the change long lasting. I decided thatI am going to let more of the little things she does that annoy me slide by, andto stop doing things just to annoy her. That is just the first steps. AfterI’ve got those down, I’ll look at the situation again and work on something else.
If I work hard, impossible though it may sometimes seem, the change can be madeand I will be a better person because of it. E. “To me, life is God’s gift to you. The way you live yourlife is your gift to God.
Make it a fantastic one. ” p. 83I chose this quote from the writings of Buscaglia because itties up all of his ideas into one little bundle. If you were to give someone agift and then watched them neglect it, abuse it, or destroy it, your feelingswould be hurt and you would be pretty upset. But if you were able to see themshow it off to their friends, love it, and take care of it, you would feel likethat person appreciated the gift and it would be almost like a gift to you.
Upon reading this quote is where I took the opportunity to look intothe future. The gift that God gave me is a wonderful one. Sometimes I have ahard time seeing my life as being wonderful because I make so many mistakes. But life is wonderful because life is about making mistakes. It is what we dowith them that is important.
I know that God always sees me as being wonderful. God loves me. He gave me life. God wants me, and every other person, tobecome the very best that we can be, and then to become even better.
He wantsus to nurture life, to love life, and to live it. Let’s do our best.