I scheduled the MRI after the EMG* since so I could “relax.” But I didn’t fall asleep in the MRI and it had nothing to do with the banging and clanging. It was because of what she said.
It started off as the usual banter.
“What do you do?” she asked.
“I’m a literacy consultant and a writer.”
“What do you write?”
“I’m writing my second book for teachers about using children’s literature to help kids write better.”
“I bet that’s needed!” she said.
“I suppose so,” I replied.
“My daugher is a 4th grade teacher in Miami,” she paused. “Hang your arm down so I can find your vein.”
She began poking around. Once she found one I asked, “How long has she been teaching?”
“Does she like it?”
“Well, the kids don’t work hard.”
“Oh?” I asked.
“Yeah, they’re from South American countries and they’re completely unmotivated. A little alcohol and then you’re going to feel a pinch.”
I felt the coolness rub across my skin. I wanted to respond to the outrageous statement she just made, but then the needle went in.
Just like that a horrible statement was spewed and the IV for the contrast was started. The tech applied the paper tape and I tried to think of the best response. Should I start with “Maybe your daughter isn’t making instruction relevant for the children” or “Do you realize what a hateful thing you just said? I taught in the inner city and I find your comment lacking in consideration for the children and their families.”
Before I could decide, she loaded into the MRI for the scan. It took everything I could muster not to grit my teeth because “those kids” used to be my kids. Sure I came across unmotivated kids during my years in the classroom, but the majority of my students wanted to do learn and to make something of themselves. I detest the stereotyping of children and people from other countries as “unmotivated.” That kind of world view frustrates me to no end.
*= Today’s tests are an effort to figure out if I’m suffering from cubital tunnel-only or something more.