It was a dark Sunday night in mid October. The chill in the air and the underlying feeling of the coming holidays overwhelmed me as I worked on my lesson plans for the coming week. The dark cloud feeling of depression had settled in and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t shake the feeling of deep misery.
I was miserable in my new job as a first grade teacher. I had never taught it before and I couldn’t get it right. I couldn’t get it perfect. As many hours as I put into it, I couldn’t shake that feeling of imperfection.
That night, I had reached my whits end…but I didn’t know it.
That Monday morning was the same as usual. I woke up, got ready for work and climbed into my car along with all my school supplies. The only difference was, I hated every moment of it. As I thought about the daily struggles I’d have to encounter, I felt like collapsing on the ground and melting away. I didn’t want to move forward; every step I took felt like a monumental feat.
As I entered the school yard that dark Monday morning, the resistance to what was coming kept getting stronger and stronger. As I unlocked the door to room 408, that familiar classroom smell overtook me, I felt the strong pangs of fear build around me like two iron walls.
I can’t do this today…and for that matter, for the next twenty years.
In a split second I decided my fate.
Fuck the eighty grand in student loans. Fuck the fact that I had no savings. Fuck the fact that I wouldn’t be able to pay rent. FUCK EVERYTHING!
I placed the teacher textbooks on my desk followed by my lanyard and classroom keys. “I’m getting the fuck out of here”, I thought myself as I raced to untie myself from the last several months.
As I jumped into my car, I flipped open my phone to text the principal. I knew it had to be immediate and quick before I could change my mind.
“I can’t do this anymore, I’m leaving this job and the profession. I’m sorry for everything.”
With that, I drove off.