Archive for February, 2011

Necessity is the Mother of Self Re-Invention

February 12, 2011

The last 9 or so months have been a bit of a carnival ride for me.  No, that time period didn’t revolve around pregnancy.  At least, not in a literal sense.  It has revolved around a pregnancy of a metaphorical sorts after which I would birth a new me.  I was thrust from a comfortable status quo of stay-at-home motherhood into an uncertain period in which my husband was laid off without another job immediately lined up for the first time in our 10-year marriage.  During those dark and depressing days, we made the decision that I would return to work as it was the only way to keep our rainy day funds from completely drying up.

I was fraught with anxiety over the prospect of returning to the working world.  It wasn’t so much in that I would have to send my son with whom I’d spent the first three years of his life as his devoted caretaker while my husband worked to daycare, but it was because I would have to re-enter a world where I had no career path or direction.  It had only ever been a job path.   I feared winding up in another dead end job where my professional and personal growth would be limited.  So it was decided that I would finally implement my college degree in Spanish and enter the world of education.

I will have to admit that I did have some reservations about pursuing this career track.  It’s completely different from a traditional corporate setting where you are placed at your desk all day only to get up for a break or an occasional meeting.  This involves helping to mold young minds while balancing and fostering parent, child, peer, and superior relationships.  Not to mention, I’d be attempting to do this in another language that is not my native language.  It is a bit overwhelming when I try to imagine the big picture, but little by little, I’ve managed to whittle away at the lengthy “to do” list while being surrounded by a huge supportive network of family, friends, and possible future colleagues.

To make it especially challenging, the local news median outlets have been filled with headlines focusing on a massive budget shortfall and educational cuts in all area districts.  To say it’s discouraging doesn’t even begin to touch on the amount of doom and gloom that I feel in going forward with this process.   It looks bleak.  Really bleak.

Currently, I’m just two content-specific exams away from completing all of my pre-employment requirements.  What that means is that once I’ve passed those exams, I can make no further progress towards my teaching certificate until I’ve been hired.   Competition for positions will be fierce in the upcoming school year as a result of all of the cutbacks and layoffs, and even in a higher need area such as bilingual education, there is no guarantee that I’d be hired on by any of the districts in which I’d be willing to work.

I wish the timing of my rebirth wouldn’t have occurred during such a difficult time for education, but this is one pursuit I do not plan to abandon.  In the meantime, I’ll keep my chin up in the face of such adverse circumstances and enjoy and appreciate any and all experiences I can get while being in a classroom.