I knew I wanted to become a teacher before I knew most things about myself. I even have adorable pictures of me reading books to my invisible classes and stories of my 5-year-old gradebooks to prove it.
Once I was in college & spending more of my time in classrooms, I was convinced that I wanted to teach in Title 1 schools. I wanted to make a difference. I wanted to help where help was needed. I was going to be so in love with teaching that everyone else would want to teach too!
This is where we get real. (Already!?) Yeah, I know, we got to this realness a little quickly, but here it is. I did not love my job. There were parts of it that I loved. There were these 30-minute spurts where I would say, “Okay, this is what I'm supposed to do. I’ve got this.” But looking back, I realize I was just trying to convince myself.
You may be thinking, “Okay, you didn’t love it… But not many people love their job. Jeez, you must be a millennial.” And you’re right - but I truly believe it was more than just not loving it - it was hurting me.
The first year, I convinced myself that I was just in the wrong place. It was because I was far from my family, from doctors, from Target (that’s a very hard place to be far from in my opinion), and I just didn’t feel right about it. So I moved.
And... you guessed it. That didn’t solve my problems. It was the same thing in a different place. Target (and my family) were a little closer, but it still felt wrong. I stayed this time, determined to make it work, but it just kept hurting.
There came a point where I didn’t feel like myself anymore. I hated when people asked about work, because I didn’t even want to talk about it. When I did talk about it, all I would do was complain. No one wants to hear that any more than I do.
I was tired of dealing with behavior 98% of the time and never being able to teach.
I was tired of feeling like being in my classroom was like being stranded on an island (seriously, when you’re actually wanting people to come observe you, you know something’s wrong.)
I was tired of a lot of other things, too, but we will stop there.
Just so tired.