By: Kathy

Have you ever wondered what it would be like trying to coexist in two vastly different worlds? I know. I live it every day and it's hard. So damn hard. It wears you down. Each world tugging on you, vying for dominance. Each trying to shape you until you fit into it, recreating you, making you into something you didn't think you'd ever be. You're stretched between the two, pulled in opposite directions until you reach the breaking point. Once sure of who you are and your place in the world. Now not knowing where you belong or who you are anymore. It's confusion. It's chaos. You wander between the two, alternating personas and changing who you are and how you act to fit whatever environment you find yourself in from day to day, from hour to hour.

When I'm at the university, I'm part teacher, part student. An academic and a researcher. When I first started at Rainier, I loved it. The knowledge, the new experiences and the people. I reveled in it. But as time went on, as I learned more about the inner workings of Academia, I discovered the treachery, the deceit. Students doing whatever they had to do to pass, to get a grant or a loan. Grades that could be bought; professors that could be bribed to look the other way when a student cheated or simply pass along those who would otherwise fail.

Then there's my other world, the police. There, I'm an observer. A sometimes consultant. When I first started, I was excited by the thrill of chasing and capturing the bad guys. Then came the ridicule, the blatant discrimination. Rejected by the tight brotherhood that allowed little, if any, room for an outsider like me. So I changed. My appearance, my behavior, trying to fit into a world so totally different than anything I'd been exposed to before.

As time went one, I found myself drifting further and further into that police world. Immersing myself in it to the point where I was slowly retreating from my once beloved world of Academia. I thought I was beginning to be accepted there, among that brotherhood of blue. Accepted and welcomed. But I was just deceiving myself, seeing something that wasn't there. A fact made clear one night when Jim and the others were going out for a beer after work. With a 'See you
tomorrow, Sandburg', they left. Without me. Feeling rejected, unwanted, I sought out some of my peers from Rainier. My fellow students, my fellow TA's. Only to be told that I was no longer welcome. That I had ignored and forsaken them for too long.

So now I sit here alone. Without a world, without a place to belong. Forever drifting between two worlds yet not truly belonging to either one. Alone. Outcast. Still desperately seeking something I've been searching for all my life.


The End


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