Friday, November 7, 2014

Friday Inspirations and My Future



Today, I was going to list out goals for the month, to try to keep myself accountable for something. The more I thought about it, however, the more I realized that right now, setting goals just isn't for me. It's not that I'm goal-less or that I don't have anything that I'm stretching for. Trust me, there are plenty of things I'm working toward. It's just that, for the first time in months, I feel content. I feel like the path I'm on is the right path for me. To some, the path of substituting to make money and blogging (for free) doesn't look like it's heading down any lifelong path, but for me, right now, this is right.

Over the past few months, I've struggled with job hunting. A lot. More than anyone (other than my poor Jeromy) probably realizes. At the core of the job hunt wasn't finding a job I could do, but rather a job that I could love.

Once I decided to be completely honest with myself, I realized that teaching is what I should be doing for the rest of my life. 

When I left teaching 3 years ago, I was a lost puppy. I thought that because the life I was living at that moment wasn't the life I wanted, that meant that EVERYTHING in that life was wrong. And to some extent, it was. I've realized that teaching in a public school is NOT right for me. Sure, I went to public school, and the only places I've ever taught were public schools. However, I'm realizing, as a teacher, this is not the right place for me. Without getting too fired up (because man, this fires me up), I can say definitively and without question, public school teachers are lacking the resources and structure that they need to be the most effective they can be. And while many, many teachers (and some of my best friends) are making the best of a shitty situation, I know that I can't follow that path.

So I'm going private.

Am I selling out? Some people probably think so. I have a lot of respect for all of my friends and teachers who have dealt with budget cuts and pay plateaus and unsupportive administration. However, I know that if I put myself in that situation again, I will not survive. I need to be the best teacher I can be to the students who are looking to me for guidance and support, and in public school, I won't be the best teacher I can be. For me, guiding and supporting is what teaching is about. Sure, they need to know how to write a complete sentence and read Shakespeare, but what they really need is affirmation that they are being heard and support through the most confusing times in their lives. High school is hell, y'all. If I can help one student get through it easier, then it will all be worth it. In public schools (at least the ones I have experienced), there is resentment, fear, and struggle that would overshadow my ability to be the best teacher I could be.

I've been really hesitant to talk about it out loud for fear of judgement. Also, while I have applied for a position that I am perfectly (both educationally and personally) suited for, I'm still waiting for a contract. That's scary, and this whole journey to now has been a roller coaster. Last month, I pushed myself; I set goals and worked hard to achieve them. I pushed and pulled to get myself on the right path.

But I finally feel like I'm on the right track.

So this month, no goals. No pushing. This month, I focus on my fiancee and our little family, I focus on finishing graduate school, I focus on working hard to keep food on our table. But I'm not striving for more. I'm coasting, and I'm ok with that.

For now. For November.

10 comments:

  1. It is so valuable to know yourself in the way you're describing! I, too, left the public school system after years of working with kids in extreme poverty and taught at a private school. Wealth is not indicative of health. Just bc kids are in a private school doesn't necessarily mean they're emotionally stable and do not need the things you described. Working with children in any capacity is the important work! Go you! Big ol' (((HUGS))) and high 5's!!!!

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  2. Personally, you have to do what's best for you personally and professionally. I thought teaching jobs were sometimes hard to come by in some areas so people should be overjoyed that you have employment, no matter what sector.

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  3. Good luck with your future plans and I'm happy for you that you've figured a few things out and feel at peace! Don't worry what others think of your choices- you aren't here to please everyone, just to grow and become the best you!

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  4. You go girl! I'm so proud that you let yourself listen to your heart! I'm struggling with my own life decisions at the moment, but until I can do something about them, the struggle continues. I hope everything works out your way in the end. :)

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  5. love you, my sister. i'm so happy you can finally coast. :)

    -AO

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  6. I completely understand going private. Public education systems and all the rules and regulations would drive a teacher crazy. My mom was a teacher and principal and teaching is what I really want to do too!

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  7. We all come to a point where were go beyond the symptoms of our emotions and get to the root of what makes us unhappy. My hope for you is that teaching in the private school sector fulfills you. Thanks so much for being vulnerable.

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  8. I think its great you have sat down and figured out how to stay true to yourself and what you really want out of life.

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  9. It looks like you are on the right path. Concentrating on what's right for you and your family is step #1. You need to find your "happy place". Good luck!

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  10. That's interesting to know about public schools. I guess it's different anywhere you go. I only worked in charter schools and it was HORRENDOUS. I would have to buy my own supplies, no administrator support, the parents were either too overbearing or didn't care if their kids even came to school. I highly doubt I will ever teach again but, if for some reason I did, it sounds like private schools may be the way to go.

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