A few weeks back, a colleague and I had a nice chat about our careers, our ambitions and our lives. We both mentioned how driven we used to be. I remember starting my teaching career at the very young age of 22. Back then, I was determined to get my PhD in Education and become a superintendent or director. A few years back, I had given up on that desire but still expected so much more from myself professionally. I was often heard saying "if I retire a teacher, shoot me." I always wanted more.
Earlier this year, I had an opportunity to further my career and sign-up for a principal's course. The School Board I am employed with predicts a huge shortage of administrators in the next two years. This presented itself as an excellent opportunity to further my career. As much as I think I have the necessary skills to become an effective administrator, I passed on the opportunity. The new role would take me away from my Miss B too much and I'm not prepared to commit to others in the same capacity as I want to commit to her. I don't want to be stuck at school dealing with a parent, teacher or child when all I really want to do is pick my kid up from her school and find out how her day went. I don't want to lecture students in my office about completing homework, tasks and assignments. I'd much rather help my daughter with her spelling instead.
This past summer, I read an article about a woman who was running a fortune 500 company and gave it all up to raise her adopted daughter. She said that while many people her age had accomplished so much more than she did, she was actually quite content with her life. I related to her message. For once in my life, I didn't want more, expect more or strive for more.
As I shared this story with my colleague, he said that he had experienced a similar path. Recently, someone had said one word to him:
It stuck with me in more ways than one. So, it's my word of the day. And... quite possibly my word of the year.
Enough of everything that doesn't contribute to my life in a happy, useful or productive way. Right now, I need to let go of so many things. I don't know how to do it but if I keep repeating this word to myself like a mantra, it might help in some small way to free myself of the guilt, the anger, the frustration, the sadness and anything else that I carry along for the ride that doesn't benefit me in any way.