Fight the New Drug

Fight the New Drug Video: My porn recovery story

***To see my featured talk "How Love Defeats Porn" given at the Catholic Information Center in Washington, D.C. click here. ***

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Me llamo Mateo

Mi familia:
Me, Jelly, Tom, Brittany, and Jordan on our first day of work!
These past two weeks my boss Jenny has been presenting me to each and every class in the high school.  There are about four classes of 30 kids in each grade.  The colegio (high school) has five grades starting with los sétimos (8th graders), octavos (freshmen) novenos, (sophomores), decimos (juniors) y undécimos (seniors).  It took me awhile to figure out that I need to add one year for each grade.  For example, undécimos literally means 11th graders, but in the states those are juniors.  Get it?  

Anyway, the usual protocol is Jenny and I walk around to the classes, she knocks on the door to get the teacher's attention, I silently pray to God to be with me and my nervousness and butterflies, and we walk in.  Everyone stands up for the guest. I have a smile on my face, back straight, good posture. Jenny tells everyone to sit down and begins in Spanish talking about FrancisCorps and "our nuestro compañero" i.e. me.  She asks them to give me an applause, and it's my moment.  I remember thinking it was going to be a short, "Hi, I'm Mateo," but she told me beforehand that I needed a five minute presentation about myself.  Damn.  This was what I more or less prepared, and is probably verbatim for most of my classes:

"Muchas gracias. Bueno, bueno.  Me llamo Mateo.  Mucho gusto.  Conocí a algunos de ustedes ya.  Pero quiero conocerlos a todos.  Permítame a presentarme.  Soy Mateo.  Soy Filipino, pero soy de los Estados Unidos, específicamente el estado Carolina del Norte.  Estudié a la Universidad Católica de América.  Esta en Washington, D.C.  Es la misma universidad de mi compañera Elizabeth.  ¿La recuerda Elizabeth?  La extraño también, porque (laughing at myself) ella es más guapa que yo. (I usually get a laugh here, and at least some smiles from the rest.  A couple times if the teacher was male he'd interrupt and say "Si , para mi, si."  I'd roll with it and say, "Sí, para usted.  Es la verdad.")  Lo siento.  Pero estoy aquí ahorita.  ¿Qué más? Ah, quiero aprender más de Costa Rica, Moravia, este colegio, y sus vidas también.  Oh (looking at Jenny) y más de los trabajos sociales con Jenny.  Voy a ayudar con el proyecto La Isla.  ¿Qué más?  Más que mi. . . ah, me gusta tocar la guitarra y jugar deportes (here I look directly at the guys eyes) como beisbol, volibol, fútbol, baloncesto…todos.  Estoy emocionado por este año, y de nuevo, quiero a conocerlos a todos.  Gracias." we really felt on the first day.
I remember the first day, especially the first couple of times I was mad nervous.  But towards the end I grew confidence, and even got a second round of applause when I finished sometimes. Gracias a Dios.

Me llamo Mateo y estoy aquí ahora. Be nice to me, please.


1 comment:

  1. :) sounds like everything is going great! keep up the great work :)