“It takes a lot of courage to show your dreams to someone else. ”
― Erma Bombeck
365.199 (Indiana Educational Standards for grades 9-12) I apologize if this post is a bit dramatic, dreamy and tying up lose ends at the end of a movie type feeling. But that is where my head is at. About two months ago, I made a decision. Something was missing in my life. I feel connected to my profession but also disconnected. I knew something wasn’t right, while something wasn’t inherently wrong either. When I started this educational journey of mine all I ever knew is I wanted to be a teacher. I also loved English and all it encompassed (writing, reading and literacy). I started as an education major because that is what teachers do, right? Once there it felt wrong. I had to basically double major to teach English at the high school level. I didn’t have the time or the money to do both despite my trying too.
So I changed majors. I lived and breathed English until the day I got my BA. Then I decided for my MA in the same area and dedicated myself solely to it. Neither will never ever be a decision I will regret. I always believed I would be lead to the classroom where I belonged even if I took the path where my heart lead me instead of the path of some institution or government organization’s suggested. I knew when I got my MA that I would begin finding a way to maneuver myself into that classroom or continue pursuing my education to get to a classroom that way. I had no idea how or why I went this alternative path, but I knew it would make me more valuable and I had faith someone would see that value beyond me.
In late March, on a whim I looked at the job database for Indiana Department of Ed and low and behold I saw a position that I believed I would qualify for. When I saw their requirements I didn’t meet all of them. Because really I have only technically been a college instructor and have no sort of Indiana licensing. But something in me said to go for it. And I did. I told Mommyjargon that exact day that I have no idea why I applied, it is a year too early, but I am just gonna put all the faith I have in God and trust if it is meant to be it will be and the rest will fall in place.
I didn’t hear for awhile. I kind of gave up and was totally okay with it because I planned to teach my last two semesters at my university anyway. I can’t lose either way because I truly love both. Just when I decided it wasn’t happening. I got an email that they had decided to interview me. In my gut, I kept thinking, “If they would just meet with me they would see my love and passion for this field”.
I laid my heart on the line in my interview in a way I never have. I told them who I was, what I believe and why in the world they should consider me when clearly my path was unique to that of the traditional teacher. I told them no hard feelings if they decided to pass and we could both move on our merry way, but that I felt I had something extraordinary to offer if only the opportunity would be given.
Longer story a tad shorter….At last night’s school board meeting for this school system my name was recommended for the position. I proudly accepted this position and the endeavor I know I will have before me in finishing my last year of graduate school while teaching full time (not to mention the various other responsibilities I have).
In this position I have the ability to teach high school students college expectations and show them that high standards can be met with the right kinds of support. Of course, the job is so much more than being summed up in a sentence, a blog post or a simple here is why.
This is my dream and it has been and will always be to work with, in and around the written word with students. I have always known that and in the moments I doubted it was when I failed the most and was the most unhappy. This is the exact reason why I believe I was picked for this position and was told such by those above me that made the decision. The passion and love I have for the classroom and the profession seeped through but it was because I was myself and not anyone else.
I am horribly sad at the thought of leaving my alma mater, but I am so grateful for the experience I had teaching and the wings they helped me to grow. Also, I am incredibly happy that someone heard my passion and love for what I do and took a chance on me. And so you folks know, the state of Indiana recognizes me as a chance because I *just* teach college. Okay, so I have already began the process of jumping through Indiana’s hoops to get myself considered less of a chance. In the meantime, my new school system and myself both took a chance that something amazing can happen here and we have begun to make this a reality.
I am a willing and ready participant in the educational process and I am under no assumption that a perfected road lies ahead. In fact, I am quite sure it does not. But never ever have I been more ready to tackle whatever comes and do so with the dignity, grace and honor that I have spent the last 10 years of my life preparing for and seen in action every day by the very people that have trained me/worked with me and supported me. I am ready.
I am also ever grateful to those in my pool of awesome people who stuck their necks out and sold me. Please know your glowing recommendations and stories made the difference. You all helped me to be more than a piece of paper and helped to make my spoken dreams meet up with the written dreams that I have whittled away to you all of these years.
I honestly feel like I am on cloud nine and as if I reached this impossible feat repeating to myself, “I did it. I dared to dream.” Like Erma says up there….I spoke my dream aloud expecting no one would hear or understand and they did. My life is about to incredibly and drastically change in ways I have only dreamed of.
I will now be Mrs. E the high school English teacher for East Allen University for East Allen County Schools.