Wednesday, May 23, 2007

This is not my beautiful job

Yesterday I got a really nice present. Opportunity. This job opening came up that I wasn't even looking for through a friend who was kind enough to think of me. It's an Industry job, entry level.

So after six years as a teacher, I'd be using my vast knowledge and fancy two degrees to make photocopies and get coffee. And I'd have to take a small pay cut and a big cut in benefits. But the person I'd be working for is an amazing talent with an awesome career. I get all giddy just thinking of what I could learn.

At first I was kind of iffy about it. My job pays well. I don't have to stress bills too much and I have dental and vision and lots of free time in my day.

But I'm also bored. I like my job. There are good days, like this morning when the sample question on the state standardized test was "Who was the leader of the Bolshevik Revolution?" and one of my kids shouted out the correct answer which he only knew because of our studies of Animal Farm. Then another student picked up the copy of The Great Gatsby that I recommended to her for pleasure reading and couldn't put it down. A homeroom student thought Animal Farm looked interesting so he borrowed it, read it in one day then came back to discuss it with me. Voluntarily. Those are things that remind me why I get up every day.

But it's starting to wear thin. It's not like I have discipline problems. Aside from the fight last week, I very rarely have problems with my students' behavior. The problem is more that I've been doing this long enough that it's almost too easy for me; I don't feel like grading papers or making lesson plans and I've started to use premade study guides I find online instead of making my own. I still have exciting days where we really get into the material and I still try as hard as I can to make the class interesting, but I'm losing energy.

And I didn't realize this until yesterday. This opportunity came up, an opportunity that jumps me way ahead in my writing career, and I was afraid to take it because I would lose the security of the job I know. And I realized that my fear was going to land me a thirty year career in a place where I never intended to stay. Is this how it happens? You go to work one day and look around and it's thirty years later?

Writing Partner has worked for several years as a recruiter (which brings up his own issues with the thirty-year job security plan), so he took a look at my resume and cover letter and I sent it off to my friend who hopefully will talk me up. I don't know what my chances are of landing this job, but the important thing is that I'm finally in a place where I'm ready to take the chance.


  1. You only live once, Em.

    You can always go back to teaching if this doesn't work out - but why regret not giving it your all? Fuck it - do it, dude.

    Do it.

    Just fucking do it.

  2. I reached this point last year. Although, I didn't have a job waiting for me. After seven years of a great wage and a comfortable lifestyle, I just abandonned it all. It's been one of the most exciting, freeing and rewarding experiences of my life.

    The glimpses of hope you are having with your kids on a routine basis will be replaced with new prizes in a different context. Avoid the midlife crisis. Go for it.

    Security is overrated.

  3. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you, Emily!

    The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become. - Charles DuBois

  4. You GO Emily! What is life if not taking chances. Geez, I've had to completely reinvent myself in the past couple of years. If I can do it, so can you! Sending you major grrrll power!

  5. Every minute not pursuing your dream is a waste of time. So, go get the cake and enjoy the ride!

  6. You go for it.

    Best of luck - we're all rooting for you.

  7. I was going to write a whole long thing where I related your situation with a choice I once had to make...but it would just be boring. So without knowing everything about your current mindset, your current financial situation, all the risks involved (I can take a guess what sort of job this is, but I won't), I'll say that if you feel that if you want to do this, that you have to do this, then you should do it. Sometimes risks are necessary.

  8. Resume is in the pile and my friend mentioned me in a favorable light. So now we'll see. If I get this job and Maggie gets the job she applied for the world will be glorious.

    And I'll finally get to eat lunch with grownups and pee when I want to.

  9. No matter what, this is saying to the universe "Hell, yes, I'm ready!"

    Just imagine if Sting and Annie Lennox had never left their teaching gigs.

  10. Change is GOOD.

    Keep us posted. Good luck! :-)


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