Good lord, has it really been months since I last posted? When I started this whole high school teaching gig, I thought that finishing teaching at 3:30 in the afternoon would afford me some time to write, to enjoy things that enrich my soul, and maybe to piece together a draft of my dissertation.
Well, that’s a joke. I often say that I’m incredibly thankful that I do not have a husband or children right now, for they would be severely neglected. Things are a little better this year, but even now I have little energy for anything more than eating a dinner and falling asleep to Netflix when I get home from work…which certainly isn’t anywhere close to 3:30. Last April, May, and June I was regularly working 20 hour days, often putting 15 hours in at the school building itself (getting there at 6 am and leaving at 9 pm). If that makes me sound like an amazing teacher…it shouldn’t. No one can be effective with that much overload…but that was what I had to do in order to do all the things the school wanted me to do.
Even with all of that, I’d intended to return to that school for a second year. It seemed easier in the long run than finding a new job. Luckily, Someone was looking out for me. A similar teaching position opened up at a different school…and I got it. I get to teach two college courses in addition to a senior high school English class, and one of those college courses is literature. FINALLY. These changes certainly feel like they were Meant.
The school where I am this year is a very tough school with some pretty major problems, but this year, I’m a much better teacher, and the insanity that the kids do doesn’t throw me like it would have had I been there last year. And I’m a little better armored when it comes to helping my kids deal with their awful situations. (Seriously, most of my kids work a 40 hour work week in addition to going to school–and an alarming number of them are their family’s only source of income. Their conditions are Not. Good.) And while my work load is not light (I am preparing for three classes and have double the number of students I had last year), I have less active teaching hours per day (7 as opposed to 10 last year) and can use the ‘extra’ time to grade and plan. Better yet, the administration at this school is much, much more reasonable. My department head in particular is a dream.
I’m still working a ton, don’t get me wrong. And I will be a probably be hot mess this year, too. In addition to teaching all new classes, I also have to write a thesis to earn my M.A.T. But I’m oddly hopeful.
Craft stuff is also going pretty well. I’ve not had much opportunity to continue my individual studies, but I’m loving my coven and the activities we do. I’m also helping to teach a 101 class with them, and that’s been lovely. The seekers are fantastic people, and I’ve very much enjoyed getting to know them.
Hopefully things will level out soon, and I can again be more than just my job. Fingers crossed!