omgomgomgomg.... We are buying a house!!!!!! Aaaahhhh!!!! Finally!!!!!! So we went to see it on Thursday night, and immediately knew we wanted to put down an offer. Almost immediately got a counter-offer from the sellers. OMG! We countered back again, and they accepted!!
So, pending inspections and that everything goes smoothly, I am a homeowner!!!!! Planning to move in Memorial Day Weekend.
Its in the middle of town, which we were trying to avoid, but the lot is so beautiful, large, and quiet, we immediately looked past that. Its almost 1 acre. ITS AMAZING.
This was so unexpected this week, in the middle of my career-crisis stress, which is at an all-time high. I find the timing to be a work of divine intervention. I'm not a church-going person, but I do believe that things beyond human comprehension go on in our lives and a higher force is in control. And this house was meant to be.
FINALLY. It makes sense that this is the one we were waiting for. THE ONE!
Regarding career-crisis, nothing definite to report yet, but I'm following through with various options. I am rapidly approaching the point when decisions need to be made. For realz.
Its no longer a secret that I'm planning to leave NW at the end of this year. (Especially since I just typed it for all the interwebs to see...)
I haven't submitted my resignation yet, but as long as there isn't a void of acceptable options at my disposal, and I find something, I will be.
I've given my principal and fine arts boss a heads up.
And I've decided, its just plain and simple. I. Need. Less. Stress. In. My. Life.
I was retelling my first day at NW to someone at happy hour yesterday. How I stood in front of a classroom full of misguided youth that did not give a flying flip who I was or what I was doing there. I came to terms in that second that I was just going to keep on talking that day, and they were going to completely ignore me and carry on their shenanigans and that was just going to be what that day was going to be. Do not fight it.
And at that time, I was INVIGORATED. I was up for the challenge. I was going to turn that classroom around. My music classes were going to be a place of achievement, not screwing around.
And I did. By golly, I seriously did.
But, I'm not as resilient as I once was. It is time to go, and take care of ME.
Turning that program around provided a great deal of fulfillment for me. But now my needs have changed.
I'm realizing I want to focus my efforts on making a difference at the micro, instead of macro, level. That's where my natural strengths lie. Behind the scenes. Small groups. One-on-one.
And I had an EXTREMELY life-affirming morning today. I have spent the last 2 years in my classroom receiving almost exclusively negative feedback from my students. And in particular, a certain class. And I can tell there are more coming. I lost my confidence as a music teacher, completely.
But today, I judged at an area school district's middle school solo/small ensemble festival. And it was AWESOME. I had FUN, teaching (judging/providing feedback) music, for the first time in months, maybe years. The district's teachers and students and their parents gave me raving positive feedback. I am worthy! I made an impact!! I was valued!!! I am good at this.
Not that I haven't made an impact or been valued at NW. Because I absolutely have. But not enough to balance the hardships out. As a teacher in high-needs schools, its never enough. There's never enough time. There's never enough resources. There's never enough interventions. I reached this kid, but not that one. The one hour I spend calling 10 parents regarding important academic or behavior issues, there are another 10 that I should've called as well.
I rediscovered this article, which I realized is the source of my Work Your Proper Duty Day Campaign.
If policy makers would really take a look at how teachers spend their time, they would realize our education system is broken. Things have to change. Take care of the teachers first, so that they can take care of the students.
In the middle of my career crisis, I'm thinking in the back of my head, I could leave but maybe under the right circumstances I will go back to teaching in the public school classroom. But at the same time, I'm thinking to myself: No. I'm a breast cancer survivor, gosh darn it. I've been put through the ringer already. I don't need to keep doing this to myself. Public school teaching is not a reasonably allocated career field for any human being. There's not a teacher on this planet that isn't cutting corners to make it home so they can have a good night's sleep. Why can't we be given the conditions in order to actually do our job, and serve our families the way they need to be served!!??!! Some communities are more resilient than others, and because they do ok, everybody chooses to ignore the problem.
So, what's my plan now?
I've submitted applications for an editorial assistant job, and a communications coordinator job. Getting ready to submit for some other things too. Completely not education-related.
I'm considering a piano accompanist hourly position as well. I would love to continue contributing to the classroom, and NOT BE IN CHARGE. However, the issue is the extreme pay cut/lack of summer pay. So I'm brainstorming ways to make up the difference. Part-time flexible things, such as working for a pet-sitting/dog-walking company. Or go back to teaching private music lessons. It JUST SO HAPPENS, the house we are now buying as a PERFECT set-up for a home music studio. I mean, hello. If that's not a sign, I don't know what is.
Again - No solid plans or decisions to report, at this time. But changes are happening.
I actually came across this article about the new moon phase that happened on April 7th.
(also a sign. April 7th is the day I had a 24 hour emotional breakdown and decided, THIS IS IT.) Not to go all crunchy granola on you by talking about zodiac signs and voodoo. The timing of all these coincidences and signs is uncanny.)
So. Acceptance. Gratitude. And Healing. Hoping to find a career solution that will contribute to long-term healing.
Its time to move on. I hope my path becomes clear SOON!