- Opinion: What Public Schools Can Learn From Private Schools - September 29, 2021
- Check Your Toxic Positivity and Correct Your Word Choices - September 12, 2021
- A Year Later After I Resigned From Teaching in a Pandemic - August 18, 2021
- Survivor's Guilt and Collective Trauma in Returning Back to School in 2021 - June 30, 2021
- Critical Race Theory: When the Texas GOP Tried to Stop Teachers From Teaching About Racism - June 7, 2021
- Take a Sigh of Relief: End of the Year Reflection - May 21, 2021
- It's Worth A Shot: A Teacher Reflects on Mandatory Covid-19 Vaccines - April 27, 2021
- Death and Resurrection: A Time for Repentance and Change Around Race - April 4, 2021
- What Are Your Qualifications to Be an Educator ? - March 17, 2021
- When Teaching Middle Schoolers: The Most Asked Question is, "Are You Insane?" - March 8, 2021
I’m one of those people who liked the app called Timehop that shows pictures and statuses from social media from prior years. This morning, there was one of my little dogs, Emerson, before we had to put him down due to health complications. The image was of him sitting in my garden, tilting his little furry face to the sun with a smile. He was a sweet boy, and it broke my heart to say goodbye to him. Yet, after that closed door, another opened to acquiring the cutest rescue puppy named Abbi who has filled our home once again with love - and fur. Another reminded me that this time of year sent my children on their first adventures into college life. Now my house is silent as my grown young adults are living their best lives far from home.
Then the final one revealed an image of my former classroom, empty aside from boxes, and the status letting my friends know I had resigned from my teaching position due to Covid-19 concerns. The image brought a fresh batch of tears as well. To date, that moment in time represented the hardest decision of my life. Yet, I do not regret one moment of it.
As I said, I do not regret the decision to resign - not one bit. I just did not feel comfortable being in the classroom exposed to the possibility of getting this awful virus. My health and the health of my family are too precious to risk it. Yet, I remember staring at those boxes piled in my living room half questioning if this was the biggest mistake of my life. I love teaching. Although I took the year and pursued a few other ideas, I came back to teaching. So, I started online tutoring, which was sometimes fun meeting students from all over the USA. I pursued my writing career since I had an abundance of time to do so. Then when October 2020 rolled around, my husband was hospitalized for an emergency appendectomy and a few weeks later, our first grandchild was born.
Both required quite a bit of time away from the keyboard and served as a reminder that I made the right decision as substitute teachers were nonexistent in our area and personal leave had been highly discouraged unless absolutely necessary. So, as mentioned, I have no regrets about leaving. I just started having questions about my next step to take.
After my husband and I became fully vaccinated in February, I started updating my resume and sticking my toe in the water for a job next year. I decided I wanted to go back to the classroom. My husband said that was my home away from home and brought me joy. He’s right. I am a person of faith, so I did start praying for the proverbial open doors to open as well. I never believe in coincidences, so when a former colleague texted me that evening about an opening at her school, I felt as if it was heaven-sent. So, I applied the next day, received a call for an interview a few days later, and accepted the position a week later.
Never in a million years would I have guessed how the circumstances would have played out this past year. At first, I did feel hopeless and lost. Now, I know it has been for good. 2020/2021 has been a difficult year for all of us. If you are on the fence about if you should return to the classroom or not, I totally understand. I see it all as a huge leap of faith. I have that image of Indiana Jones crossing that chasm without seeing the path - he just had to step out before it appeared. Maybe that’s what you need to do - take that huge step into the unknown.
You have friends here at The Educator's Room, so reach out to us. That’s one of the reasons we are here to offer support and a shoulder to lean on. Take it from someone who has already crossed the valley to the other side. You can do this!