Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Retired English Teacher Is Going To Work

Once the Christmas decorations were down and put away, I looked at the winter months spreading before me and wondered just how I would get through those long days when my hubby was off to work.  Oh, I had plenty to do.  The desk is covered with family papers, old letters,  and photos needing to be sorted, filed, and archived.  I promised myself I would get that done after the first of the year.


I'd begun going through closets and cupboards sorting and tossing while I put away Christmas, but I still had much more of that type of sorting and tossing to do.  

Books are stacked waiting to be read during the winter months.  

Writing a personal history was also on my to do list.

I had my ladies groups at church to look forward to.  And, there is my writing group that needs to get going again.  All of that would also take up much of my time.  Not to mention that I could always go to lunch with my girlfriends.  Yes, I had all of that going on, and I so enjoy these activities.

I'd started a workout plan on our new elliptical machine.  I hoped to make sure I also got the club to do water aerobics at least twice a week.  There were Zumba classes being offered, and those low impact aerobics class also.

I promised myself that I would start cooking more at home and planning healthier meals.  I have been pretty consistent in doing that since the beginning of December.  

Yes, I had plenty to do while Jim was working.

Yet, I could not shake the desire to go back to work, so there was this job, and I applied for it.  As I told one of my girlfriends, I hate filling out the application process on-line, so one day, I sat myself down and completed the process anyway, partly as a practice of discipline.  

I had another year and a half left on a teaching license that I had renewed and never used since I had renewed it.  It took some doing just to renew that license on-line.  I'd had to reconstruct all the professional development I had done, prove I had done it, and submit all the papers to get the renewal.  It seemed so much easier when we just found our papers and submitted them to the Colorado Department of Education.  Now, it all had to be done electronically.  My husband, and many of my friends thought I was crazy for doing it.  "Why do you want to renew again?"  In my heart, I just wasn't ready to let that hard won certificate expire, so I renewed it.  After all of that, I had never used the renewed certificate to teach again.

Mostly, I have just been missing working in the profession I loved so much.  I missed the mental and intellectual challenge that teaching brings.  I missed the contact with students.  I missed working with other teachers. I wanted and needed the feeling that my days had a purpose that met the passion I have always had for teaching.

A phone call came.  An interview was granted.  I was greatly impressed by the principals I met.  I loved the school.  I was excited about the possibilities.  The next day, a job was offered.  I took it.

Today, I signed a contract to teach again.  I will begin my new job on January 24.  I will be teaching ELL (English Language Learners, or English as A Second Language.  I will go between three elementary schools and one middle school in School District 11.  I am quite happy about it all.  

Tonight we went to dinner to celebrate that I had signed a contract to teach through the end of the school year.  As Jim signed the check, I mentioned to the waiter that we had just eaten a celebratory dinner.  Soon, very unexpectedly, the waiter reappeared with a dessert to help me celebrate my new adventure.  He said,  
"Thank you for being a teacher."  


After I signed my paperwork today, I was quite humbled to think that I can again become a part of a profession that has given me so much more than I ever gave it.  I'm grateful to have the health and the desire to go back and work with young people again.  I'm looking forward to mentoring and working with the aides whom work with the ELL population in the schools where I will be working.  

Many years ago, a fellow worker in the school where I worked said to me, "I could never give up working as an elementary school secretary, because I'm hooked on the smiles I get each day."  I understand that.  I love seeing the light come on and the excitement that a child expresses when he or she finally understands and can speak a language that is new to them.  I can't wait to get back to working with my dear ELL students.  
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