A Life on the “Outside”

Often I excuse my compulsive need to read and research all things educational with “I don’t have a life.” It is true that my child has long grown past needing me as a parent – I no longer do homework or nag to complete projects or carpool to sports. So I don’t have obligations or promises to keep in that regard.

So why don’t I live a “normal” life – one where you leave things at work, not to worry over them until the next day?

Teaching, believe it or not, is an insane profession. Piecing together the puzzle of why one child masters a topic while the other struggles – and what to do about that – is a riddle I not sure I’ll ever master. Twenty-five years later, I continue to struggle with delivering lessons effectively, lessons that children enjoy and connect to other learning. That takes research. Thank goodness for the World-wide Web or I would need a cot set up in the local library.

Lately, I’ve begun to wonder about what life will be like for me outside of teaching. I have two – or three if our investments tank – years left in the classroom before I feel financially secure enough to back away from a “regular job.”

I know I’d like to travel. I know I’d like to explore a book writing idea that Adrien and I have had on the back burner for several years. Throughout my life I have done something in the arts, I enjoy cooking and gardening and reading and knitting. But mostly what I’ve been for nearly half of my life is a teacher.

I regret the lack of balance in my life. That my profession overwhelms and consumes me most days. But I am hopeful that I can find my place in the world – my life on the “outside”.


2 thoughts on “A Life on the “Outside”

  1. Once again, you have read (and written) my mind.

    My husband has been so supportive and understanding of my passion/career, teaching. He points out to me, (all. the. time), that I work enough hours to qualify for a second job; he is right.

    I am continually searching for balance. I too, am fortunate in the fact that my children are grown and living their lives independently, so I don’t have the guilt of choosing my career over time spent with my children.

    I now spend my time with other people’s children.

    I am grateful for a career that challenges me and allows me to make a difference.

    I am even more grateful for an understanding husband as I continue to search for balance in a challenging (and rewarding) career.

    1. Oh boy, isn’t that the truth – without families and spouses supporting us (financially AND emotionally), I don’t know how a teacher doesn’t burn out.

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