Updated: Dec 6, 2020
I’ll dive right into it.
I got a new job.
Yes, it was a quick change. Honestly, it kind of happened really fast. A colleague shared with me an ad for a teaching assistant position at a really big deal school, and I just on the whim applied for it. So, as of now I’m no longer a teacher in my old place of work - which made me want to write about my last days of teaching at the old place. If you’ve read part I, II, or III, you can get a sense of what my teaching journey has been like. Honestly, I thought that in all truth, leaving someplace new would make me really excited and happy. BUT, that was not the case at all! I completely started getting these weird emotional feelings of some sort that I had never really experienced before.
ONCE AN EMO ALWAYS AN EMO
As soon as I got the offer, there was about a month of school left. I didn’t think that I’d have to leave so soon, or rather say goodbye to my students and place where I had become comfortable. I decided not to tell my students until the very last day of school, because I knew they would freak out, and be distracted during the final days of the term. Some I didn’t get to tell at all, but most of the ones I had bonded with I had to tell. And it was tough! Because I then realised how influential we had both been in each others lives, and it was crazy, because I was noticing everything in that moment. I had a couple of kids cry (T T), which was making me suuuuper emotional, but I just had to smile through it and not look at their faces, lol! This was so hard! And then that was pretty much it. I just left. Almost as if I had never been a part of that community. I sent a letter to the principal just saying thanks, and that was it.
Being at my new place of work has been going well so far. The hardest part is thinking about how my old students are doing, if they are coping well with my replacements. It was tough not comparing the new kids to my old ones, whether positive or negative. Viewing types of privilege, manners, attitudes, behaviours, anything really. Both kids are so different. I got this feeling that I had left something of mine behind. And felt as if those kids were “mine” somehow. I find this sooooo funny, especially since I was so determined not to get attached to those students or that school. But the truth is I gained some level of comfort at that school, no matter how negative I felt towards it.
I did feel guilty after being in the new school for a week, as I quickly realised the upgrade I had just gotten. (Thank you Jesus!) And not because I was unqualified or anything imposter syndrome related, but because I felt bad that I got upgraded while my students had to suffer with less than mediocrity. I felt and still feel that it isn’t fair that they don’t get to experience quality education and to explore a range of how to learn well. But then again, God keeps reminding me that things which are out of my control should not be up to me to worry about. Like, it’s wrong to keep thinking you can change someone when it’s not you who’s in charge of their life. (Does this make me a control freak?) Anyways, it’s what I’ve been slowly learning how to let go of, without the badness of forgetting the memories and good people I encountered along the way. I used to pray for those kids nearly everyday, and now I feel like I’m not allowed to pray for them. But maybe it’s not that I can’t pray for them, but I should focus on the kids I’m with now, and try to bond with them and help them in the time I have with them. That’s my prayer and hope.
This job is so completely different - I have completely taken a backseat and only do what I’m told. I’m not in charge; I don’t mark papers, I don’t write reports or set exams, I don’t lead discussions, don’t follow up with work, none of that. I kind of just observe and help where needed. It’s so completely different. Because of this, I guess it does sort of deny the title since I’m no longer a teacher…at least for now. We’ll see. I seriously needed a break from the classroom teacher role, and I feel this new job is giving me that. (Again, thank you Jesus!)
Check out parts I-III here