on august 3rd, 2016, i sent my letter of resignation to middletown public schools. walking away from my career wasn’t something i ever envisioned. but after penny was born, everything changed. i dreaded returning to work and extended my leave to half a year and then eventually the entire school year. when everyone inquired about me returning for the 2016-2017, i responded that, indeed, i was though i did share my worries about returning to work. i really wasn’t so much concerned about penny because she has been on a great schedule for a while now and is used to being with her grandparents.
i had come to the realization that i didn’t care so much for my job anymore. when your passion for anything dies, you can either try to get it back or move on. back in march, the city i worked in notified 16 other teachers and me that we would be let go due to budget cuts. due to initial shock, i cried and was understandably distraught over the situation. but, the more i thought about it, i realized it was a blessing in disguise: i had secretly been wanting to stay at home and now i really could!
but then a wrench got thrown in the works because a few months later, i was notified that all the teachers would be rehired. i felt pressure from myself, and others, that i should return, so i signed the contract on june 8th. since then, i had been dreading the start of the school year: thinking about buying school supplies, cleaning and setting up the classroom, organizing and creating lesson plans, and so much more.
then, out of the blue, dennis said if i really wanted to stay home, i should. i was so ecstatic and relieved to have that support from him that i broke down in tears. why did i want to leave my job so badly? well, here’s a little bit of my work background.
even though i had been a classroom teacher for one year, i had been in the education field for a decade. as an undergraduate, i worked part-time (full-time during the summer) at a child care center for almost four years. then, i did student teaching and was a substitute teacher for a few districts. then, i moved to connecticut to become a building sub and would also later work as a long-term sub, interventionist, and finally obtained my own classroom. with each passing year, i became increasingly agitated and stressed over the escalating expectations of teachers. with all this accountability on making sure students achieve high scores on standardized tests, i slowly started to weary being a teacher but i kept on because i had been trying so long to be one.
after all that, one might think it’s such a waste to throw that all away but, to me, it’s entirely worth it to stay home with penny. it was a no-brainer for me anyway because i had steadily become more and more jaded with the education system over the years. teaching will always be there.. maybe in the future when penny (and her siblings) are all in school i’ll return; or maybe i’ll pursue a different career, but the truth of the matter is i can never experience being at home with penny again.
being at home is difficult too, of course. penny has been taking steps on her own for a few weeks now but just recently she has been walking more and more on her own. she has also transitioned to one nap so usually i spend this time cleaning up a little bit, but also trying to get some shut-eye myself because it’s tiring to chase her around and keep her preoccupied with constant activity. usually, i don’t fall asleep but i do feel better after resting my eyes.
summer is my favorite season, and i was always mournful when it ended because that meant the start of the school year. now i can completely enjoy the fall season because i don’t have to stress about being miserable at work. i am so psyched for all of the fall activities coming up: apple picking, pumpkin picking, hay rides, cider doughnuts and juice, fairs and festivals, halloween, enjoying the foliage, jumping in leaf piles to name a few!