A Break From the Madness or Taste of Normal Life?

For whatever reason, I seem to find every break from school does the opposite of what it’s supposed to.  Much like during the days after Thanksgiving break, I have returned from winter break feeling more worn out than before.  And this time, I actually made a concerted effort to focus on recharging my batteries, not just cutting loose and running myself ragged.  But ultimately, I think returning from break is so depressing because my teaching life is just so far off from anything that’s healthy, happy, or sustainable.  For two weeks, I let myself forget, so that I could hopefully rejuvenate myself, but the chickens have come home to roost.

All I know is that with my feet back in the fire, my head is just not in the game right now, at all.  I think my confidence is just gone–my confidence that I really have the power to make a difference through my job.  I have got to find a way to break out of this, and I think some radical changes are going to have to be made.  I feel like I’m at the center of one huge mess that I’ve created, and it’s just too much to fix and there’s no time to fix it.  Everyone wants something from me, things I’m obligated to supply, but I’m completely overwhelmed.  And I’m mad, because I’m supposed to be better than this.

On a longer term note, I bounce back and forth between guarded optimism and fear.  On one hand, I think I’ve learned a lot about myself from the experience that will make me stronger as a person.  And I look forward to being a happy person next year.  But on the other hand, I fear that what’s really happened is that my faults have been exposed, and that I’m not only a fatally flawed teacher, but that I will be fatally flawed no matter what career I choose.  And I also fear that by the end of the year, I may have done lasting damage to my mind and body.  I experienced some concerning moments last summer that I hope were random things, not warning signs.

Tomorrow, my main directive is to figure out what I need to do to 1) survive the rest of the year (or month, for that matter) and 2) hopefully make a positive impact somehow on these kids.  Sadly, I think the most obvious first step is to resign as assistant coach, which is where I actually feel like I am making a positive impact.

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