Being a first year teacher, it didn't come as a shock to me that I was getting laid off this year. I feel I have grown and learned so much this first year, that I was hoping it wouldn't happen, but I knew it could be a definite possibility. So a little over a week ago, on a Friday, I stayed after to talk to my principal about whether or not I had a job. She confirmed my suspicions exactly. They were having to demote one of our assistant principals, because we just don't have the numbers to get funding to have an extra principal. Sadly, that means I'll be moving on. That could mean something as small as a different school in the same area, or even as drastic as moving across the state.
It turns my stomach in knots to think about leaving Hoptown. My kids ran me ragged this year, but I really love them to death. As many times as I was frustrated with them, there were times when I was so proud and full-filled in my work too. I have students that I am definitely sorry to leave. Some were even requesting me as their teacher. I guess life is full of disappointments on many sides. I have no idea how far away my job search will lead me, but I know I will more than likely not be at Hoptown High. There is a small possibility that the numbers would change, that we'd need another Social Studies teacher, or that someone would leave, but in all seriousness, I don't hold out much hope for it.
The only hope I have is that I'll find a job near where I have found my new friends and new life here in Christian County or one of the surrounding counties, or I will find a job closer to Knoxville and my family. Either way, I would at least not be completely bereft of any support system. I felt so alone when I first moved to Hopkinsville; I do not relish the thought of winding up that way again. It seems that so many jobs are up near Cincinnati, and I must go where I can be useful.
I feel a little bit like Mary Poppins. Ok, so I haven't jumped through any pictures lately or made any carousels come to life, but I feel a little like I'm abandoning my kids. Perhaps, they don't need me anymore. If I have taught them anything this year, I hope I taught them to be more kind to new teachers. It is not as easy to teach as some teachers can make it look. It's not easy to be cussed at and maintain enough composure to make it through a lesson. It's not easy to make up a lesson when your original plan falls through. It's not easy to get up and move, and be able to come prepared on the first day of school.
I know for certain I wasn't ready for the first day of school this year. If I was able to stay here, I would be more confident in my start next year, but since I have no idea where I'll be or when I'll get hired, the plans are a lot more fuzzy. I do not know if I'll be teaching the subjects I taught this year, or if I'll be thrown into a new area of Social Studies. I don't know what kind of kids I'll be teaching, what kind of background the area will have, or what kind of people I'll be working with. I did, however, learn a lot about what not to do, so hopefully, I will make a few less mistakes.
I was by no means the perfect first year teacher, but my principal says that she would have kept me if she could. I find that encouraging, since she's writing my recommendations. There are many things that I can work on, but I know what my weaknesses are, and I focus on how to solve them. I love teaching, and as grueling and tasking as the students at HHS can be, I still want to teach. Those kids were probably the best test of whether or not I was cut out to be a teacher. I may not have been the person to ace the test, or pass it gracefully, but I'm certain I'm in it for as long as I still enjoy it.
Today I was told my one of my students from student teaching that I was his favorite teacher ever. I have no idea what I did to deserve such praise, but it made me feel better just the same. It's hard to move on when you've found students you love, and you want to continue helping. But the student I talked to today along with some of my current students are living proof that wherever I go I make an impact in some way. I may not always feel like I am successful, and I may not even be successful immediately, but I do have an impact, hopefully for the better. I do know this....they've impacted me for the better.
When I was just a child in school, I asked my teacher, "What should I try?" "Should I paint pictures?" "Should I sing songs?" Here was her wise reply: " Que sera sera, Whatever will be will be. The future's not ours to see. Que sera sera. What will be, will be."