This post comes after yesterday, where after my second period class, I went to a dear friend and colleague's classroom and broke down in tears. I told her that I hated my job. That I hated teaching. A profession that I had dreamed of joining since I was a young girl.
Do I really hate my job? Do I really hate teaching?
No, I don't.
Yesterday's words were those of a teacher who right now feels beaten down and exhausted. A teacher who feels powerless and undervalued. A teacher who feels like she is working so hard, but is never good enough. A teacher who thought that she would never by disillusioned by education, at least not so early on in her career. A teacher who is crying right now as she writes this because she is ashamed and scared of her feelings. A teacher who last week started a jar called "My Jar of Happiness". A jar where she places little notes about the good things that happen to her at school. A jar that operates (hopefully) as way to remind her that she doesn't actually hate teaching. A jar of stories to remind her that what she does is meaningful and useful for her students.
I sincerely hope that I am in the minority, and that these feelings are just a blip in my career. But right now, these feelings have been bogging me down for almost four months, and I feel alone, despite not actually being alone. These feelings make me think there is something wrong with me. That they're further proof of my failings as a teacher. I wonder where I went wrong. I wonder when these feelings will subside.
I am working on reframing my feelings. Reminding myself that as long as I am doing my best, as long as I am trying, as long as I am learning, that I can't ask any more of myself.
And while I hope that I am in the minority, I hope I am not alone. I hope that other teachers have felt this way, but that it passes. I hope that teachers with years of experience can tell me that there have been lows such as this in their careers, but it does indeed pass, and things get better. I sincerely hope so.
I don't hate my job. I don't hate teaching. I am doing my best. I am trying, and I am learning. I can't ask myself for more.