So I know many of you may not understand this post, and that’s fine. I’m used to people not understanding my thoughts, actions, and feelings. The thing is, I don’t do these things for anyone else except for myself. Whether you understand them is up to you. However, I have been feeling the need to write about, de-stress from, and deal with this aspect of my career, and I figured what better way to let it all out than right here on my blog where it may just help someone else out.
I’ve discussed before that I teach at the most amazing place in the world. I’ve been there for almost a year already, but I’ve been part-time for that entire year. This fall I’m trying something new. A position opened up and I just couldn’t resist. I grabbed it by the horns and I rode it straight through to signing a contract.
I’ve been super excited about my first full-time job ever since I graduated from school. No one ever thought it would take me this long to sign that contract, but I’d never give up the experiences that I had as a substitute for all this time. And just like I always thought, God would find me the perfect place, where my personality would fit in with the community of the school and my abilities would mesh with what the administration was looking for. It happened. I couldn’t be happier.
Yet as we near the weeks of August and all of those days of endless meetings, pre-year training, planning, organizing, etc. my mind is taking a little turn for the worst. I’m getting so excited that my brain is turning said excitement into anxiety. Not everyone’s brains work this way (dear God, I hope not at least…) but mine does. So I have started the battle against the anxiety, to prepare myself for the first few weeks of school before they even begin.
Every time I go down to work, people look at my like I’ve lost my mind. Here I am, working on paperwork, in July. They probably think I am certifiably nuts. Most teachers complain because their summer vacation isn’t long enough. But here’s the thing. I’m readjusting myself to having to make an hour commute each way, and I’m getting planning done that I’m not sure I’ll feel like doing on the weekends in August.
In addition, I’m getting myself used to the idea of spending a lot of time in that office. By the time school comes, I’ll be happy to be running around like a crazy person trying to catch up with students and make it to class on time. And that, my friends, is exactly why I am going to school one day a week in the middle of July. By the time August rolls around, I’ll feel like a pro at this teaching thing all over again.
Everyone keeps telling me I’m stressing too much, worrying too much, and planning way too far ahead, but here’s the thing: it works for me in this case. Normally I can’t plan anything or make decisions about the simplest of things. But when it comes to my job, at least I know what I need to do to get things done.
And it doesn’t help that I’m working on receiving my Masters Degree right now; talk about a heavy course load. I’ll be teaching five subjects, spread over 7 classes and taking classes of my own. It’s not nearly impossible, but it’s highly stressful. I wish people could see that working ahead of time is what works for me, and that by doing so, I’ll be happier more often when the school year rolls around. That, after all, is the time when I need a break most often.
So my summer might not be anything like the rest of the teachers’ out there. Maybe some of them are working on classes of their own or planning ahead of time, but I don’t see anyone else at the office, and I doubt that happens in a lot of other schools either. The thing is, I don’t necessarily work harder, I just work in my own way.
My purpose of this post was mostly to let that little rant out, and explain my feelings to myself to ensure that I am doing what is best for me. Obviously, I have just proven that fact in writing, so I can read it any time I start to question my decisions. In the meantime, I’ve realized that I cannot be the only person who is not looking forward to the beginning of the school year.
And so I wonder… what are most teachers feeling about the beginning of school this year? Are you excited? Why? Are you nervous? Why? Most people have some anxiety about big things occurring in their lives, and even if you’ve been a teacher for years, you might still have some nervousness about the beginning of a new year. It would make sense right? I mean, most students have anxiety about the beginning of the school year, so why not teachers too?
The thing is, even if we are nervous, we are doing a huge job! We are making a difference in numerous lives, and unfortunately, one mess up on our part could have a detrimental influence on children. I would imagine nerves in our career are pretty normal. What I’m wondering is how other teachers deal with that summer’s-ending, school’s-starting, oh-crap-I’m-running-out-of-time stress.
If you have certain things that you do to gear yourself up for the beginning of the year, please let me know below! I hope that by next week I’ll have a list to share with you all during the next Talking Teacher. And, if no one chooses to help me, maybe I can still do some research on the net and find out some ideas that have already been shared. We will see!