Sheer bliss...that's what I felt Monday morning. Why, you ask?
Yesterday marked the return of teachers all around metro Atlanta. Unless of course, you teach in Cherokee or Henry counties, which started school today. Or Gwinnett or Cobb, which mandated two furlough days to make up for the budget crisis. We become creatures of habit, so it was quite different not showing up at school for a week of pre-planning activities.
There were parts of teaching that I honestly loved...the thrill on a child's face when something "clicks," the hugs in the morning, arriving to school feeling exhausted and having a little girl say, "You look beautiful today, Mrs. Haws!" I loved my co-workers and the camaraderie we shared. But there was plenty to make me come home and cry at the end of the day...county politics, uncooperative parents, trying to figure out how to be a fair disciplinarian, not having enough resources for the kids, and spending my time in crowd control rather than teaching.
I am grateful for the time I spent teaching. It was the hardest task I've ever undertaken, and I know that I'm stronger for having been challenged and stretched. But no amount of growth is worth the stress that teaching put on me personally and my marriage. Not everyone has the same experience that I did, but the emotional drain was at times absolutely unbearable. Needless to say, the amount of relief I felt when I was done was refreshing. Charlie said it best: "I have my wife back."
Now, don't get me wrong...I'm about to embark on an even more difficult challenge in PT school. It's not going to be easy. In fact, they compare it to the first three years of med school. But to me, it's different. I have worked extremely hard this past year to even get into school, taking classes at night and all summer. I worked three jobs last summer to get in all my observation hours. I sacrificed weekend activities to complete homework and lesson plans. I feel like I have ownership of my education. And that makes all the difference.
So to all my teacher friends, whom I dare not list by name, lest I leave someone out...happy Tuesday! You are one day closer to the weekend!