I've been back at work for the past couple days and it's almost been like I've never left. I admit that I was a bit nervous about going back. With all the stress and overwhelming workload I was taking on before my leave, I wondered how everything would be upon return. Well, I think I came back on a good week because it's been like riding a bike.
The kids, albeit talkative and a bit rambunctious, fell right into line. I didn't have to tell them how to walk down the hallway, remind them of the four class rules, or explain what it means when I look at them out the corner of my eyes. They KNOW. Not only that, but can I just say how much cleaner my room looks now? When I walked into the room, I expected a disaster. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, but it was terrible nonetheless. Papers EVERYWHERE. Needless to say, the classroom is nice and neat now.
I also didn't waste time talking to parents. It was so funny because when one parent saw me, he responded the same way his son did. "Oh my God! Mrs. Jones!" *hugs* It has been a warm welcome, and if school was always this seamless, I think my life would be a tad easier. But, there's a reason why it's not.
I said all this to say that I think it would be difficult for me to just give up teaching altogether. I have to be a part of it in some way. I know that entrepreneurship is the ultimate goal, but could I ever just NOT teach? Absolutely not. I realized today, that teaching comes natural to me. Just like writing, I believe it's a gift. I hear so many people say, "I don't know how ya'll teachers do it. I couldn't handle one kid let alone a classroom full." But, you have to understand, writing, reading, teaching, creating, producing, and researching has been in my life for a long time.
Research shows that by the time a child reaches 8 or 9 years old, they begin to show signs of the type of career they will have by their interests. I believe that this is true. One of my childhood friends is a great example of this. Every since I could remember (my earliest recollection of this was in the fourth grade), I remember my friend saying at the tender age of 9, "I want to be a neonatal nurse. I want to work with the babies." Nine. Not nineteen. NINE. I often felt down because I didn't think I had that one thing I thought I would do like she did, but who was I kidding? I:
Played school with my siblings and cousins
Saved old textbooks from teachers
Study the dictionary
Fill up journals with words (which I still do by the way)
Create little projects on the computer (I used to design animations when I was in high school)
Served as co-editor in journalism in high school
Participated in journalism/yearbook for both middle and high school years (basically since I was 12 years old)
Read books from sun-up to sun-down
You get the picture, the signs were always there. My natural gifts were always present, but it took me until I was in my late twenties to actually see them as a gift. I thought everyone could do the things I could do. It was simply not true.
With all that being said, I'm going to continue walking in the present moment. I can't say what I'll be doing in five years from now specifically, but what I CAN say is that I'll be walking in my gifts and appreciating every ability that I do have. God is good and one way I praise him is by giving back to Him what he gave to me. I dedicate everything I do to the source of my existence -- the source of my gifts.
What are your natural gifts and talents? How will you use them in this world?