So today I told my principal that I was resigning in January.
This decision was a long time coming, but necessary for me to move forward with my journey. The school I work at is more than just a job. In our county we are kind of pegged the “black sheep”. Because of this label, it’s caused the people in our school to rely on each other and treat each other more like family than most faculties. In addition, our jobs are more demanding than any other school in our county due to the range of students we teach compared to the actual size of our staff. We are all in the same boat in some way, shape or form. No one has it easy.
Almost 4 years ago I was desperately searching for a full time teaching position, when the principal (at the time) called me in for an interview. I had not applied (one of her collegues had suggested me to her) and I had actually made the decision not to pursue a library position until later in life. I was on my way to babysit my favorite little twins, but the principal insisted that I interview on this particular day and that I could come after babysitting. I figured it was worth a shot. Why not?
Even though I’ve lived in middle Tennessee my entire life, I had never even heard of the school (or location) that I found myself driving out to. I was not prepared for my interview in the least. I showed up in my hot pink plaid shorts, flip flops and my hair wet from swimming. The interview seemed very relaxed (and not just because of my flip flops). Everyone was nice, though I was a bit intimidated. After getting a tour of the building, I left. I don’t even know if it was a day later that I was notified that the position was mine if I wanted it. I had NO idea what I was getting myself into or where I was even supposed to start, but I said yes.
As I write this post, I cannot stop the tears from falling as I come to the realization that this is exactly what I am going through now.
I don’t know for sure what is going to happen next or where exactly to start, but I do know that I am doing what’s best for me.
No, I don’t have a set plan.
No, I can’t be certain I won’t fail.
Yes, I realize this seems crazy.
Yes, I realize what a risk this is.
BUT (thanks to the words on a Pinterest quote I recently pinned)..
“Sometimes life is about risking everything for a dream no one can see but you.”
I have to know. I can’t live life wondering “what if'”.
What if I fail?
What if I realize I made a mistake?
What if I miss everyone?
What if I go broke?
What if something bad happens to me?
What if I get lost?
What if I don’t go?
Let’s get back on track…
As I said before, my school is much more than just a job. Over the past 3 1/2 years I have grown more than I could’ve ever imagined.
I made friends that will last a lifetime. I got the chance to explore the “caterer/chef” side of myself that I always wanted to pursue. I felt the love and support while I went through 2 of the biggest changes in my life (aside from this one). I finally understood what it felt like to have a big family including tough love and forgiveness. I experienced watching children grow and learn things for the first time….that “click”. I have become another, better, version of myself.
The hardest part in ALL of this is leaving my other half. My rock. My other mother. My other sister. My best friend. My work wife.
Every year when the students leave, all of the teachers cry as they say goodbye to the students. While I find that goodbye somewhat difficult, my tears always came when I said goodbye to my assistant for the summer. It’s not like we weren’t going to see each other, but I just knew it wouldn’t be like it was during the school year. That thought now is physically eating me up inside knowing that once I actually go, it will never be the same. We will never spend 7+ hours together 5 days a week. We won’t suffer through some of the tulmutuous tasks that we have to do, to rejoice in the little things like extra time to walk outside during lunch, to laugh together at some of the silly reasons students come up with for why their books were returned in the state they were, to hug each other when our personal lives become too overwhelming and all we have is each other. Just like when we leave for summer, however, I know that we will still see each other, but just as I said before, it just won’t be the same. The only difference is that this time I know that it will never be the same.
Regardless…the time is quickly approaching. In just under 2 months, I will no longer be employed by Williamson County. A dream I worked hard to achieve, but everything happens for a reason. This past unknown journey changed me as a human being and I will take all of the lessons I learned while working at my tiny rural school with me as I move onward.
I will put on my big girl panties, wipe my tears away and move forward onto this new unknown path to learn exactly what I am capable of.
words by: Drew Wagner
To all of my ‘Boro peeps: Thank you for all of the support, understanding, smiles (and tears), but most importantly the wealth of memories I have to look back on! Stay strong when the tides change, remember that you are a role model (not only to the students), push yourself when you need to, but be gentle with yourself too. I love you all (both past and present)!