Monday, March 28, 2016
I'll Answer the Call Now
Dreamy job was a web analytics position for a ginormous, and I mean HUUUUUGE, multinational corporate real estate company. Great money. A boss on Park Avenue. The thought of being able to put that money toward some specific goals for our family was appealing, but at the end of the day, when they didn't pick me...I wasn't really upset.
I admit, I had heart palpitations thinking I might put us in the poor house, but that was the extent of my regret.
My ego might be a little bruised. I might be a little burnt around the edges after five weeks of interviewing and waiting, but alas, I had a sneaking suspicion the work would be boring as shit and I'd soon find myself in the same place I ended up in my previous job. Perfectly capable of doing the work but utterly burned out and bored.
Teaching, writing, books, and social media make me happy. I know this about myself.
The happiest I've ever been professionally was in a career college as the director of general education. I taught courses full of students with lives and families and real struggles outside of their studies, I supervised 35 faculty members, I worked on a great team. I also had plenty of time to read and blog. I used my voice in every way I could put it out there.
Ever since I quit my PR job at the university, I've had teaching gigs flying at my head so fast I couldn't commit to them because there was the chance this other job, the dreamy one would pick me. Through this process, there were plenty of moments when I thought, "This dreamy job is not going to fulfill me. Not really. But I can be bored for this money."
I've known my whole life that I am a teacher. I'm not being dramatic when I say that since I was a kid, what I've wanted more than anything was to help people somehow. I rarely talk about it, and I may never have written about it here because I am certain it's the cheesiest thing you've ever heard...but when I was born, my mom and I almost died. Both of us. Every year on my birthday she's told me the whole story of how we just barely made it. My growing brain and expanding conscience said to me in a loud and unmistakable voice, "You have to do something with this life. You have to be useful."
I have always found the fulfillment of that goal in a classroom. Education has given me the happiest moments of my life, the greatest friends, the fullest heart. Hopefully I've given some of that to my students and peers, too.
There are lots of ways to be a teacher and to share the things that are true and important. To challenge and push and ask people to think and try and push back. I've never stopped teaching...not for 13 years. No matter what I've done, I've been a teacher, too. I know a little something about it, and I think it's time I got back to it. You can't ignore a calling. I believe that.
I think I'll go back to living it now.