This week marks the beginning of my 23rd year of teaching, and I’m making an important change in my work situation this year in hopes of finding a little bit more balance between work and home. “Finding a balance” is a struggle for many teachers (it’s an obsessive job), but especially for me. Like many teachers, I consider my job as my “calling,” and have always given my heart and soul to the kids. But as I get older, and perhaps a little wiser, I’m finding that it’s taking a physical toll to be so completely immersed in work, and that’s not good for me — or for those kids. So I changed grade level (on the advice of my doctor), started knitting again (joy!), and began blogging about the books I read (and found a wonderful new community of friends!).
And then an opportunity knocked that was too good to pass up — something that would add more balance to the equation. I’m going to do a “job share” this year! I will be teaching 4 days a week, instead of five (with Mondays off!). It wasn’t something I planned to do, but when a former teammate, whom I dearly love and respect as a teacher, called and asked me if I’d consider a job share, I surprised myself by saying YES! So, we’re tightening the belt for the 20% reduction in funds, and focusing on balance and health.
I’m so excited! This will give me longer weekends in which to visit the Grandboy in Portland (200 miles away). I will have more reading, writing, blogging, knitting time. I won’t have the Sunday night blues anymore (they’ll translate to the Monday night blues now.). And because I will have such a wonderful teaching partner, I will feel happy and secure in the knowledge that my students will have an absolutely terrific Monday teacher that they will adore.