When I was a high school senior and was trying to decide what to study in college, I decided that I would go to school for teaching. Everyone I met in life told me I should be a teacher, so when it came time to make my decision, I decided to listen to what everyone told me and applied to colleges with good elementary education programs. I was fortunate enough to spend a whole year student teaching in 1st grade with a wonderful mentor teacher, Judi. I enjoyed each and every day teaching with Judi, and being a member of the PDS program. As the year came to a close, and I graduated college, I began to apply to many different schools, and ended up teaching 3rd grade in Florida, near some of my family. Although, I really wanted to love teaching, I quickly realized this was not the case. School as I remembered it as a student was SO much different than school as a teacher. I literally cried every single Sunday because I didn’t want to go in and teach on Monday. It was horrible. The kids in my class we all really great, and super sweet kids, I just hated being their teacher.
A few months went by, and I continued to try to stick it out. Everyone would tell me that it is just the first year of teaching and “everyone went through this their first year.” I wanted to believe all of these people, but I seriously just could not stand being a teacher. I remember thinking to myself that I was such an idiot for going to school for 4 years and thinking this is what I wanted to do. I wanted to like my first job out of school, and I especially just couldn’t come to terms with how unhappy I truly was. I also didn’t understand how/why I liked teaching when I was in State College, but hated it when I had my own classroom. It just didn’t make sense to me and thankfully my parents and my sister decided enough was enough and came down to Florida to “rescue me” and bring me back to NJ.
I still remember feeling like the hugest failure. I thought I would never find a job that I liked. I was embarrassed for other people to find out that I gave up so quickly on teaching. I also still get uncomfortable to this day when people ask me what I went to school for. I know the next question will always be, “why aren’t you a teacher now?” I can’t stand having to explain why I don’t want to be a teacher. Everyone also always says to me, “you probably didn’t like teaching because you taught in FL, do you think if you taught in NJ, you would have stayed in teaching?” The truth is I don’t know what I would do if I stayed in Jersey because I didn’t.
Despite the crazy road I took to find a career I love, I am happy that I have found my current job. I am SO much happier going to work every morning. I feel appreciated at my job and like I am making what I deserve to make for what I do. I come home at night and can relax instead of doing lesson plans, working on materials for the next day, or grading papers. I give anyone that is currently a teacher so much credit. I hope that anyone that has a child in school appreciates all that their child’s teacher does because it is a grossly underpaid job that is certainly not easy.
If you aren’t happy in your job, you should try something else. Although it sounds easier said than done, it is worth it. Don’t worry about what other people will think if you change careers. At the end of the day it is only you that matters, and you that can make the change. Life is too short to not be happy.
Thanks for reading and have a fun day 🙂
Here is my picture of the day…