Monday, June 20, 2011

Midpoint Realization

“We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”

- Oscar Wilde

I’m at a low point in my life.

Really low.

In fact, I don’t know if I’ve ever been lower.

If I were the protagonist in a novel, I’d be at the midpoint. Since I’m a panster, I can’t see how the rest of the story unfolds.

But I don’t have high hopes.

I’ve subbed for two years. Two years Included in that time is 6 months as an ETS. I thought that was a step leading to other places.

Seems it was just a temporary step up. I’ve had to return a step down.

Problem was, when I returned to the daily sub position, I kept getting requested at the same school. Everyday, I saw the students and teachers from the higher step. It made me believe I was still on their level.

Recently, I got pushed down. Hard.

I’m sorry about the analogies. But I can’t tell the real story.

1) I need to maintain other people’s privacy.

2) It’s devastating.

3) Even with all the reasons/rationalizations, it still doesn’t improve the humiliation.

So, here I stand on this stupid step. But it’s the trick step in Hogwarts, so I’m stuck. It doesn’t how many calls (resumes), I send. Nobody answers my cries.

I can’t go on like this.

Being a daily sub again after having my own students and classes is just too hard. Last week, I worked in my old, old school. The teaching assistant job I had left to become a sub. For this sub job, the art teacher left instructions for the 5th-grade and kindergarten. I saw she had 2 3rd-grade classes, but no plans. I scrambled through the papers in a mild panic.

Even though I had planned to hide all day, I asked the librarian. I didn’t want to see all the teachers I knew. To admith that two years later, I was still stuck. The librarian thought the 3rd graders might be going on a field trip. A 3rd-grade teacher confirmed this.

It was actually an easy day. But that several minutes of semi-panic was just too much. After having a taste of being a full-time teacher in charge of my own classes, I don’t want to have to do this again.

I can’t.

The 7th-graders who were 5th-graders back then, saw me. They all remembered my name and smiled. A few of them hugged me. Even the boys. I remembered how hard it was to leave that lovely class, where I taught Social Studies and Word Study to become a daily sub.

The “temporary” job was supposed to lead me somewhere.

The previous Friday, I wound up subbing my old Social Studies extended term sub classes. 8th-graders had mostly been practicing for graduation, so no real work was expected. I asked them to tell me about their trip to DC. Then I took them outside.

The 7th-grade was learning about immigration. I talked about Arizona and Alabama wanting to check people’s papers to make sure they’re legal just based on how they look. We talked about where the line is between government protection and interference. That led me to bring up the Wall Street Journal article about YA being too dark, and that discussion I blogged about.

Like another teacher who had been pushed out of the same school, I decided to go out with a bang.

But I returned for 8th-grade graduation. I had promised. While they sang “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield, I thought of how poignant the lyrics were to my situation:

“Reaching for something in the distance

So close you can almost taste it.”

Just like I’d thought the 8th-grade graduation song, Firework by Katy Perry, wafting down the hallway explained my state of mind while I was teaching Art the previous day:

“Do you ever feel like a plastic bag

Drifting through the wind, wanting to start again?

Do you ever feel so paper thin

Like a house of cards, on blow from caving in?”

All those years I attended school, for what?

I can blame the economy or whatever. In truth, I can’t trust that I’m the teacher I thought I was. I don’t know who I am anymore.

The other day I made a vow about when I "make it" as a writer. I’ve decided to make another vow. When the fall comes, I can’t sub anymore. This summer will not only be spent editing and querying, but also finding an alternative occupation.

Being a Car Insurance Claims examiner got me through graduate school. It’s starting to look again. (Years ago, I made a vow never to do that again. But these are desperate times.)

You don’t even need to leave me nice words or sympathy. I just felt it was false not to share this mess that is my professional life right now.

My family needs to buy a bigger place. I can’t be the one holding us back anymore. Even if I have to take another fecking staircase, I will.

Anywhere but here.


  1. I'm sorry to hear about this. Sometimes I feel stuck in my part time jobs, too, and it's an awful feeling. There's no step up for me, either. No way to make them more permanent.

    But this fuels my writing. Keep writing and I'll be there to help you through the whole query process. :)

  2. What you're going through is painful, no doubt about it. There isn't even a "but" there. It is truly horrible. The problem with these psychic wounds is that they're not visible to the outside world. Your friends and family forget how horrible you feel and carry on as if there's nothing wrong. If your wound was a hole leaking blood, they'd remember to treat you kindly. So you have to be kind to yourself. You will heal, but it may take some time. That's okay. When you heal you'll be that much stronger.

  3. Theresa, I feel for you. I'd like to give you a hug right now with the hope that it will make you feel better.

    I found this today so I thought I'd share it with you:

    A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials. - Chinese Proverbs.

    Lots of hugs my friend. xo

  4. Theresa, some things in life can't be prettified. I am in a similar situation, I need to find paying work to improve my family's quality of life, so I know how you feel. Being really honest, I would say, find something new to do come September, unless a permanent job in teaching turns up. You have tried harder than most would. Be hopeful!

  5. Aw, I'm so sorry! It must be frustrating to be stuck on the same step over and over again. But if life was easy, we'd all have it our way. Hard work and tough times will get you were you want soon enough. Good luck sorting everything out, us writers will always be here for you. :)

  6. Big, big, virtual hugs from all of us. No advice. Just listening and hugs. Hang in there.

  7. I send you love and tell you to give yourself time to grieve.

  8. Theresa, I understand what you are going through. I quit banking three years ago to pursue teaching, went into subbing, and had to relent and return to banking a few months ago. It was heartbreaking, because I wanted to teach to help the kids out there. I hear teachers complain so often, and here I was wanting to do that more than anything else. I was willing to take a paycut in order to do that which they complained about.

    I'll be thinking about you, and hope everything works out. One day we'll look back and laugh at the hard times.

  9. I was hoping to get work as a sub when I lost my job and then it seemed like my education was inadequate and there were too many hoops to jump through and I stopped pursuing the idea. If I went back to pursue the thought and managed to get on the sub rolls I'm sure I'd be in a similar circumstance as you are in now, but I don't think it would bother me as much. I want flexibility and the ability to do other things if I don't have to go to a regular position on a daily basis.

    I guess time and patience are part of the solution, but having alternatives is a good plan as well. I'm starting to wonder what alternatives I have these days. I'm starting to feel stuck in a lower place than you are and almost envy your situation.

    Tossing It Out

  10. Aww! I could feel your unhappiness!
    Sometimes, people stay where they are and become unhappy and frustrated and they are not effective. So give yourself some credit, you know it is time to move on and find your happiness. Be proud of yourself, that you had the strength to do this.
    Good Luck and I wish you all the best.
    Take care.

  11. I know how brutal the daily grind of subbing can be, and I can only imagine how it feels to go back to it after the stability of an extended position. Nothing more to say, really, other than I'm thinking of you and sending you hugs.

  12. I'm so sorry, Theresa! I think I've known you long enough now to know you are doing everything you can to make things work and for that you should hold your head high. So sad when things don't work out when you are, though. I know where you live is not a cheap place to be.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you, my dear! Best of luck!!!

  13. Theresa, you know I am here for you anytime you need to talk or vent. My heart hurts for you right now, because I have such empathy. I subbed and hated it. It is NOT the same as having your own classroom--not even close. I understand that. BUT don't ever forget that you ARE A GOOD TEACHER. It's all over everything you say, the reactions of students and parents speak volumes about who you are in the classroom. What you are going through right now, sadly, is not about you. It's about twisted admin. philosophies. Find a different job for a while to give yourself some time to heal from all of this, but please don't give up on teaching.

  14. My heart goes out to you Theresa. I know you will get past this troubled time and find your place.

  15. I feel for you, Theresa! I've been working the same job I worked when I was in grad school for the past six years. Sure, it's full time now, with benefits, and I'm working in a museum, but it's not the job I spent so long in college to get.

    And lately I've felt so divided about what to do and where to go next with my life. I've put so much effort into writing fiction, I haven't done ANY scholarly writing since my masters thesis. So I'm at the point where my fiction had better work out because I haven't done anything to make a name for myself in my field. And if it doesn't, I'm stuck in a job that I sometimes think is slowly killing me.

    It sounds like you need to do whatever it is you think is best for you in the long run. Best wishes and good luck figuring that out. Soul searching can be difficult, but the results, as long as you're true to yourself, are always worthwhile. :)

  16. Theresa,
    Be thinking of you, hang in there, you have done your best, the rest is out of your hands x

  17. I'm sorry to hear about your situation. It must be so stressful--I hope things get better!

  18. I hope that writing it down has alleviated some of the pain for you. It must have been hard. I know you only by this online forum but... YOU have inspired a lot of things I do. Did I tell you about the lesson I used "Daisy" for? I will blog about it. Hugs to you, my friend xxoo

  19. Sometimes we have to take two steps back in order to take one good step forward. It sounds hard, but you are strong and you will make it through all of this-

  20. Oh Theresa, I'm so sorry to hear about this. I totally understand that feeling of being stuck, unable to go forward but not wanting to go back. Everyone goes through that agony at some point in their life.

    Try not to let it dishearten you. Think of it this way - You're climbing a mountain. Sometimes the pass is such that you have to go down a few steps in order to continue climbing up. It doesn't mean you're going downhill. It just means that on the path up you have to work a little harder.

    I wish I could be near you so I could give you a hug.

    Chin up, sweetheart. You can do this.


  21. Theresa, I am so sorry to hear this. Even though I don't know the details, I can guess them.

    In the final 8 weeks of our school year, we saw our district lay off custodians, secretaries, and aides. Some of them had worked for us for 10 years.

    Then they went for the teaching positions. We've been told there would be no furloughs ... but that does not count the Long Term Substitutes. Somehow, they don't count them as 'furloughed'.

    One of them put in 5 years in our building, going from one LTS spot to the next, and always being promised that "next year" is the one where she would get a contracted position. Now she's just gone -- no apologies. :(

    Hugs -- good wishes -- and I hope that you will find a position that is good for you and your family.

  22. Okay no sympathy here, just tell me who I have to put a hit out on! :)

    Just hoping for a bit of humor there. I have been unemployed for 2 years now and have rode that emotional roller coaster to hell and back, what I can tell you is this...

    There is a place for us! (Know that song) We will survive and find that step up or create a trick one of our own.

    The saddest thing to me, is I know how great a teacher you are. :( I'm here if you need anything.
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

  23. I'm sorry for the place you're in right now. Life is such a journey, isn't it, one we can't always plot. I hope things turn around for you soon, and in a surprising and happy way.

  24. The real story must have been so beyond awful for you to feel like this. I am so sorry. I'm most angry that whatever happened made you feel like this. All my indignation and protective instincts are coming to the fore with guns blazing ready to beat off whoever or whatever did this to you! Not to worry I always get like this when someone I really like is hurting and the hurt's been inflicted by extraneous bad people/circumstances! :-)

    When I calm down, I say take this bad incident as an epiphany! Today begins the first day of the rest of your life. Now who said that?!?! Anyway, that was then, this is now (another wonderful novel from the great SE Hinton!!!). what am I talking about now?!?

    Oh but seriously! Whatever happens and whatever you decide please always always remember that you are an extremely talented, creative and determined person. You are surrounded by people (and a cat - is there a dog too?) who love and depend on you. You are a GREAT teacher and an AMAZING writer. If you must take a completely different route to reach your dreams and goals then I know you'll do this and do this with the steel and courage that you possess in swathes!

    The cold truth is that you don't owe the teaching profession you've devoted your life to and have given your all to - anything anymore. If they treat you with such disdain - they've definitely gone one step too far if they've hurt you like this then it's their loss.

    Of course you need the finance! Unfortunately too - one's passions are never financially rewarding! Only for the very lucky few. I hope you are able to explore other options to help with the monies. You need to be secure practically.

    Listen to me - like I know what I;m talking about (I don't - I was being sarcastic here! LOL! I could seriously BS sometimes!!!). I just hate it that someone/thing has upset you like this. You are such a lovely person and it breaks my heart that bad things are happening to you when they shouldn't!! Boo to these bad things! :-(

    Hugs and take care

  25. You are a wonderful teacher - it's so obvious from the way the kids love you. I see my kids pass their old teachers in the hall when we visit their little sister's school, and oftentimes there is no acknowledgment from either my child or the teacher. So I know the kids love you and you are an awesome teacher. But I agree that if you're feeling this low about it, you're right to resolve to do something different. It definitely sounds like it's time for a drastic change. Best of luck with everything - you'll find your path and I have no doubt that all the experiences you've had up until now will pay off in the end.

  26. I know how discouraging this kind of situation is. And I don't know why some of us have to go through it and others of us don't. Or so it seems. Do some heavy thinking and come up with a Plan B. And don't look back. The new road before you may turn out to be the perfect road for you.

  27. Theresa,

    Know that you are loved. Feel that you are wanted. Realize that you are supported.

    The education system is being overhauled in New Jersey. I am going no place even in temporary long term subbing. I feel as I do so much and care so much for these students, but the schools choose younger, carefree substitutes for the long term jobs.

    Never forget that you are a creative, vibrant young woman with your whole life ahead of you. You are in my prayers.
    ~Victoria Marie Lees

  28. I'm sorry life is sucky right now. I know how it feels to be stuck subbing and desperately want your own classroom.

    I'm sending you happy vibes!

  29. So very sorry about your hard times. I know it doesn't help that others are struggling too. But from all your posts, I see a good teacher, one I wish my daughter had. So I hope you find the end to your tunnel. I'm thinking of you and knowing it'll work out.

  30. (((((hug))))

    I've been where you are before...You are in my prayers, friend.

  31. Theresa,
    I am your newest follower. I found you on Tara Tyler Talks Blog Tag post.
    I'm going through the same thing as you right now. I've taught for a few years, had my own classroom, and now I'm subbing...again. Every time I walk into a classroom, it's another reminder of what I want, but don't have (my own classroom, my own group of kids, a steady job, etc.). Subbing for me this year, was not a steady thing - sometimes only 1-2 days per week. Now it's summer, I'm broke from not working steadily all school year, and I don't have a summer job (I'm too "overqualified" for most stores or burger joints, and no one wants to hire me knowing it's just for the summer). It's all so very depressing!
    I don't think I can handle subbing for another year, but I've only received one call for an interview (which happens to be this week) from all of the resumes I've sent out...things just are not looking all that great for finding a teaching job...which will put me right back at subbing in the fall.
    I wish you luck in your job search. You'll be in my thoughts!

  32. I'm so, so sorry. You're in my thoughts and prayers, Theresa. You can make it through this.

  33. aww, sweetie!
    this is why i am not even bothering to apply. i want people like you (and jamie) to get the full time jobs.
    the economy and poorly run govts are to blame.

    it sucks that these things are happening to you. but around the corner something good will come and things will be better than you thought. i've seen it happen so many times! (just experienced it myself!) in the meantime, i'll pray for the best for you =)

  34. Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry you are going through this. I wish there were words that would make the situation better! If only, huh?

    Well, look, I truly believe things happen for a reason. Maybe you're gonna make it as a writer, and that's why the universe keeps pushing back you finding a full-time job? :o)

    I'm here if you ever need to rant via email. Anytime.

  35. I'm so sorry, Theresa. I wish I had better words of comfort. I hope things will work out for you, that you will find yourself in an even better position than you could've imagined--and soon. Take care, sweetie. And try to stay hopeful, okay? <>

  36. I'm sorry you're going through this. :( I believe that once you're down, the only way to go is up. I am sure you will find your way professionally.

    Thank you so much for adding my badge.

  37. Oh, Theresa, I'm so sorry you're going through this. If we lived closer, I'd give you a big hug and take you out to lunch.
    I know you want stability and more control in your life and work place right now. I would want it too. Vent whenever you want here.
    We'll always be here to listen.
    Hang in there. {[hugs}}

  38. ((((HUGS)))) The words are failing me today. I want to encourage you to continue to follow your heart, but that sounds so empty and cliche. Sometimes it feels like a wild goose chase. I believe in the end everything always works out. Hang in there.

  39. On the roller coaster of life, the highs don't feel so thrilling without the deep and lolling lows. They stink, but I agree with Medeia, you can only go up. I've got my fingers crossed that things get better soon. **hugs**

  40. Theresa - I'm so sorry that you're going through this. I've been to your classrooms over the years and seen you teach - you are a GREAT teacher and your students really respond to you, I can empathize with how horrible you must feel; I've been there. I wouldn't want to go back to daily subbing either, especially after an extended sub position. Maybe this is an opportunity to do something, for now, that opens up better opportunities for a new home and allows you to focus on writing more because you won't be dealing with the stress and anguish of subbing. You are the strongest, most resilient person I know - you are talented, creative, intelligent, clever, passionate, and are so good at taking care of everyone else. Now you can take care of YOU - you deserve it! I'm in awe when I see your journey as a writer and what you've accomplished in such a short time. Right now it sucks and there's nothing I can say to make you feel better. Thank you for sharing helps the rest of feel less alone in our struggles. It's also great for you to vent and share what's going on in your life! I do believe that things happen for a is often unfair, but it's the choices we make in the face of the difficult things that happen that help define us. It's really, really hard right now, but it will get better. You taught me that :)

  41. But I wanna leave you with nice words. You're my buddy, my pal. Hmmm, the valley. Been there, done that. UGH. This too will pass. I promise.

    I can imagine what a great teacher you are. You have a heart for the kids. I know they know that. Keep keepin' on. You will become an author and when that day comes I will jump for joy with you. Sending you huge cyber hugs. <3

  42. *Hugs* Theresa. Hang in there. From your blog, the way you write about kids, I can tell how passionate you are and what a great teacher. If you have to do something else for a while for your family, to make ends meet, whatever, then do what you must, but keep an eye out for a teaching position that works. One will come along. Meanwhile, keep writing. Whenever I'm in a bad place I tell myself to take note of the emotions and details because at the very least I'll be able to use them in writing at some point. And at the very least, look how many people you have pulling for you here!

  43. You are so super awesome.
    I always look forward to popping into your blog.
    And I'll just leave you with that.

  44. When I'm in a low state, I have to remind myself that everything is temporary (even permanent work!). The fact that you found so many quotes/lyrics to illustrate your mood speaks to the universality of it. Keep looking at the stars. (I've always loved that Wilde quote.)

  45. Change is good! I had to leave banking and financing that I was with for over ten years to pursue my dream as a writer. But the bills still have to be paid. I'm confident you'll find something else to bridge the gap. Sometimes we have to take that Leap of Faith, even if you don;t believe in faith. Best wishes to you and for doors opening that were previously closed.

  46. Hi Theresa .. no worries - the changes will bring their own rewards, and keep writing, keep submitting .. and just keep going - around that corner is a real treat ...

    a big hug from across the pond - Hilary xoxoxo

  47. Oh honey. I totally believe you are a great teacher as you come across so well here on your blog. But a combination of tough times and the availability of positions near your location makes it harder than ever. I, too, am in many ways on the same step, the trick step. I'm sort of living in limbo until I decide to take some courage and leap off and start anew - perhaps as a freelance writer again. But it takes a lot to do it when there is no safety net. I really hope things become better for you soon.

  48. In a selfish way I am so glad I read this Theresa. My daughter just moved to Colorado and left her business job in NYC hoping to pursue a teaching career in her new state (she has her Masters in Education) If all she is offered is a sub job I'm going to advise her to keep looking or go look for work in her prior career path. Why should creative and talented people like yourself be pushed around the way you were way as if they are second class pawns in a dysfunctional system? If hard work and merit do not count, what does? Is nepotism the only way to get a full time teaching position? It often feels that way here ...that is when the city budget will pay for new teacher hires. Sadly, I doubt the west is any different.

    I hope things work out for you!

  49. Ack in a similar place! I love life posts like this; they make me feel less alone.

    I'd love more tutoring/admissions counseling clients, but I'm also considering going back into commercial acting, or just throwing my hands up and getting another temp job (or some part-time thing) that will bring steadier money. Writers gotta eat and we have families we're a part of. I hear ya, girl.

  50. I'm so sorry.

    This is painful now, but when you look back on this, you'll understand why things had to be this way. There's probably a really good reason why you didn't want to be at that school. You don't know what it is yet, but sooner rather than later, you'll learn what that reason is.

    Maybe there'll be a teaching job closer to where you want to move to?

    The lessons only get harder when we are strong enough to take them. You are strong enough for this. And you'll get through it and be stronger still on the other side.

    Best wishes.

  51. Theresa - I've subbed and I've had my own classroom. And I agree, it would be very hard to go back to subbing after a long term sub job! Sorry that politics or insider connections got in the way! Hope you'll find your answer.

  52. I'm so sorry that you're going through this. Your words were so encouraging to me this morning, I wish I knew what to say to cheer you up. Just know this, the blogging community really cares about you and your situation. Please let us know what happens.

  53. I've been where you currently stand so I can sooo relate. It's fantastic you've made the decision to change the situation. It will be for the better.

  54. Theresa - my heart breaks for you. Teaching is much more than a job - more than just a way to collect a paycheck. It must be so hard to not be able to do what you know you're made to do.

    In our board, most people are on the sub list for between 5 - 10 years. It's SO hard to get a full time position right now. There are so many amazing people who can't get jobs & they're always cutting back more.

    I hope whichever path you choose, it turns out to be the right one for you and your family. Take care!

  55. Big {{hugs}} to you, Theresa. I hope you get through this and come fall can look back on it as "oh, that time I got stuck on the trick step". Who knows what you'd see around the corner if you had a Marauder's Map? I wish you lots of good work and luck on your writing and editing and querying!

  56. Teaching becomes an identity, doesn't it? Or so I'm told. And there are many times when people who loved it realize maybe they don't love it anymore. I bet you will pull through though. As for getting pushed down hard, remember: "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." Don't give them the ability to hurt you or make you feel so embarrassed you hide. I live by that often when I am tutoring.

  57. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, and later you can use it in some story.

    -The Wild Girls

  58. I am so sorry you are going through this. It sounds like they hit you where it hurts. :( But like so many others have said, you will heal and be that much stronger for it. Write hard and look for a new path. If being a claims examiner made you so unhappy that you vowed to never go back look somewhere else. Have faith in your self. Sometimes are worst trials turn into blessings. ☺

  59. I commented on FB but thought I'd do so here too. You heard the saying about not staring too longingly at the door that's just closed, lest you miss the one that's just opened? Well, I know this from personal experience. Ten years ago, as a freshman at uni with considering a career in scientific research, I certainly won't have predicted my journey would take me through research, school teaching, and finally a martial arts instructor, of all things! But I wouldn't change my experiences for the world!

    Sending rainbows and sunshine your way!

  60. I'm sorry things are sucky right now. It's a cliche, I know, but these low points do usually lead to something better in the end - and often lots of creativity too. Hope all goes well.

  61. Thanks for everyone who has left messages. Many of them made me tear up. And it was comforting to know that quite a few of you have had similar experiences. Thank you for sharing them.

    I normally comment here AND send an e-mail. This time, I'm just going to send private e-mails (if your e-mail is linked to your blog) and thank you personally.

    Love, Theresa

  62. Theresa, I am so sorry you're going through this! You've worked so hard that I am shaking my head that this is happening to you.

    I know this sounds trite, but it will get better. It has to. It HAS to.

    Giant hug.

  63. Oh, Theresa, I'm really sorry to hear that you're going through such a hard time. I can relate to what you're feeling and I know exactly what you mean about the higher/lower step. :( I'm going to send you an email in a minute, but don't feel pressured to reply. I hope you feel better and I'll be thinking of you. <3

  64. Hi Theresa,

    Nice meeting you last night! Sorry we didn't get a chance to talk more. Wow, I can't believe the difficulties in the life of a sub. I hope you get what you're looking for in both your teaching and writing worlds!

    Hope we'll run into each other another time soon.


  65. I'm sorry to hear you're going through a terrible time. I hope that things get better soon. If it helps, I think you're a true blue writer. I have every faith that you'll hit it big someday, then I'll be able to say, "I know her!"

  66. I'm sorry about what you're going through. Two years of subbing would definitely make anyone feel burned out. I don't know a lot about teaching jobs at those grade levels, but maybe there are other jobs in education that you could pursue? That is, maybe there are other jobs that are related to education (nonprofit, publishing, etc.) that you could do until something else opens up. I hope that whatever you end up doing, it's something that'll make you happy.
    BTW, sorry I didn't respond to your comment on my blog sooner; for some reason the comment got sent to my spam e-mail and so I didn't see it on my blog until I checked it tonight.

  67. I know that this is so frustrating and disappointing, but I know things are going to work out for you. I just know they will.

  68. I'm sorry about all your struggles after working so hard at your job. But see this as an opportunity to find a new adventure, for further growth. I know. I've been there.

    (And sorry for making you sound like a character in a novel.) ;)

  69. New follower here, but this post really resonated with me. I have also invested years and a substantial amount of student loans into a career that ultimately drains me more than it fulfills. But the path we follo doesn't ever end, just hits a fork now and again. I hope you find your path and life lifts you up.

  70. I am also a sub that has been a long-term sub. I always feel like subbing is at the bottom of the hierarchy. However, the job is necessary. Without subs, teachers can't have sick days or personal days. I recently talked to a former teacher from Arizona. At her former school, if a teacher misses more than 4 days, there is no sub. Instead other teachers combine classes. Whether we are working as a sub or have our own classroom, there will always be someone that is rude. The important thing is to be able to discern the rudeness from the truth and not let things bother us. I know that's easier said than done.

    Pondering the comments last night, I thought of a couple of advantages to your subbing. One is that it gives you the flexibility to work on your writing. Back in the classroom, you would be spending time planning lessons and working every day. As a sub, your evenings are free and you can take days off to write or edit if you'd like.

    Also, as a sub, you have the opportunity to reach more lives. A classroom teacher sees the same students every day. As a sub, you can share your insights with hundreds of students over the year. Maybe thinking about that could help until you do get a classroom.

  71. I support your decision. I'm a teacher with a full time position now, but I subbed for two years before I got a full time position. Then, a couple of years ago, our school was on a construction schedule and we were out at the beginning of May while the rest of our district was still in school. I decided I'd try to sub in May for some extra money. I subbed once and never went back.

    I know this is perhaps little help, since I still have my regular teaching position, but I just wanted to say I understand your feelings. Thanks for sharing.

    And BTW, I say tell the story. You don't need to use real names and places, but it could be cathartic to write down what happened and share it.

    It Just Got Interesting