You Can't Always Get What You Want.

I miss teaching.

There, I've said it. Teaching. I miss it.

Before this little adventure abroad, I taught in Western Sydney for two years as a newly qualified teacher. They were two years at a great and supportive little school that showed me the ropes and made me feel completely comfortable with myself in that role. Some days were rewarding and some days were more challenging than I can remember but even still, they were two fantastic years.

When J & I discussed moving to the UK, I knew my time at that school would be coming to an end, but I was excited to be doing something I never dreamed I'd actually do - to uproot myself from my comfortable routine and to live overseas!

After a telephone interview lined up by a recruitment agency, I was offered the first job I applied for. A Year 3 class quite a way out of London in an average, run of the mill primary school. I stayed confident. I was excited. I left my lovely little classroom (with its decorated walls and labelled book trays) and said goodbye to the staff I'd grown to know and respect, and I stepped off the plane at Heathrow ready to throw myself into the teaching world over here.

I got a rude shock that day.

Needless to say, I didn't go back. I did casual supply teaching in a few different schools before landing in a nice block, covering relief across the school, but it didn't feel right. After a few short months, I was looking into other options in education - and soon found my current role. Now I'm on the other side of the desk, working in the education field but in recruitment. After a while, I was offered a different role, acting as a coordinator for newly arrived international teachers.

I work with teachers every day. They are teachers who are quite literally mirroring my exact journey over two years ago. They've come from Australia, or New Zealand, or Canada. They're probably more than a little terrified. They either have jobs lined up for them in schools, or they're relying on casual work to get them through. I support them, I help them transition into a whole new environment - from the minute they step off the plane and get acclimatized into the UK, to their first steps into the classroom over here. I've helped primary teachers. I've helped secondary teachers. I've helped preschool & nursery teachers. I've helped teaching assistants.

But at the end of the day, I'm working for the man (every night and day!*)

I'm not in that classroom myself. I don't have a class full of kidlets to call my own, to be with every day - the good ones and the horrendously bad ones. I don't have the work to take home with me, or the planning, the crazy amount of planning to do in the holidays. I don't have the organisation, of setting goals each term and assessing against those goals.

I just feel like I'm missing something. I'm not saying I'm an amazing teacher. I'm certainly not the most experienced teacher, and I never even had a permanent job - so I have nothing to fall back on. At the very least, I'm an out of practice teacher thanks to my time here in London. But I loved what I could do in the classroom and I loved seeing what my kidlets could do, and I kind of want that back.

I don't know.

I don't know how I'm going to get what I want. It's not the right time or place, or heck, even the right country, to be thinking about this. All I know is that the quarter life crisis I thought I'd averted? May still be looming in the distance.

*I couldn't resist a little bit of Proud Mary. It soothes the soul.

7 Comments • Labels: ,  


Britt said...

Just read up on the backstory there. Funny, I had no idea you were a teacher. I'm not sure what I thought you I guess if it's any consolation, you know what you're going to pursue once you get back home. And that's a big hurdle to overcome, I think. Doing something is one thing, but realizing you're passionate about it is a whole other thing. (Proud Mary always makes me smile!)

Erin said...

Ugh. That must be so hard. I've had a frustrating year, and I think about stepping out of my classroom role a lot....but I also can't imagine my life without the kids and families I work with.

Wendy said...

I wish more teachers in the UK had the same passion for teaching as you seem to have. Having a teacher who actually wants to teach rather than one who just likes the long holidays (I know several!), makes such a difference - you can always spot them at parents evenings :)
Follow your heart - children of the UK need you :)

Julie said...

I suggest waiting till after you're married? Just cos when there are kids, there are germs, and you don't want to be fighting off sickness when you're planning a wedding. :)

kirby said...

Our chinese horoscope DID say that there was potentially a career change in store for us this year... who knows!

Kelly said...

It's good that you're still so passionate about it! It means you've chosen the right path... you just went for a wander to smell the roses, albiet the English ones.

MY quarter life crisis is going to be "OMG I've done nothing with my life!!"

Nathan Pralle said...

I have a feeling that the world will find a very appropriate slot for one extremely-valuable Alyndabear to fit into. It's just a matter of time and less chaos. :)

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