I've been thinking a lot lately about what I want to do and what I'm happiest doing. Perhaps this is all on my mind because I graduate this summer from Bread Loaf and I always see a chapter ending as a chance to start a new adventure. Maybe it's because I'm feeling unfulfilled at work.
I have never had political aspirations, and find playing political games in the workplace a waste of time. Because of this, I've never wanted to be in administration, aiming for department chair was as far as I ever thought. This has not always stood me in good stead, either in theatre or as a teacher. Standing by my principles has often resulted in me watching others, who I thought were not as qualified or as dedicated, rise above me.
I take pride in my job and what I do and have always felt that should be enough. I have tried my best to be involved in my workplace as much as possible and contribute wherever I can.
However, this year, I find myself rethinking a lot of that. In part I think it's because I don't feel as though I'm being rewarded for all of my hard work, and that perhaps my stress level would go down and my happiness level would go up if I refocused just on my classroom.
Added to this is the fact that I'm looking to where I'd like to be down the road. I'd eventually like to pursue my PhD and teach at the college level. My current professor was nice enough to give me some advice which includes joining the professional organizations/societies I can and starting to attend the conferences that relate to my field. Saving to attend conferences in definitely cheaper than going to Bread Loaf every summer! And I think I would really enjoy it.
I've put my information in with the local community college, with the hopes that when they have an opening I'll be on the list. I'm also thinking of doing the same thing for the local university.
I have doubts- not about teaching at the college level, I think I'd like it more. However, I have a house and a mortgage now and there's an uncertainty with trying something new. It's a chance. What if it doesn't work out? What if I'm looking for a new job in a year or two?
I don't know. I just know that these days I'm unhappy a lot. I'm happy when I'm playing with Nehi or doing new stuff with the house or yard, but not so much with work. Maybe it's just a slump. I still love all the time I'm in the classroom. Maybe it's just that I've spent 9 years teaching pretty much the same thing. I don't know. I guess I'll just ride it all out and do the best I can. I don't know how to do anything else.