teacher man

when you are in the middle of a moment that is a bit tougher than what you expected (like the one i described in the post titled hard lessons) you tend to reflect, contemplate, and ponder…

now, how did i end up here? why did i decide to pursue this job?

it’s only natural…

for years…my sister (who’s a teacher as well) had been telling me, you should be a teacher

so, after working with kids in a variety of settings (for years), i finally went to a career counselor (about 8 years ago)…the end result of the conversations and questionnaires was–you should be a teacher–it was my highest scoring category…i remember voicing aloud, if i could just teach criminal justice to high school students–i would like that…

about six months later, there was an ad in the paper...criminal justice instructor, career and technical high school program…so, i applied and interviewed…

and then, the call came…

they offered me the position!  i still remember when/where that happened…i was driving (and yes, i took the call) and en route to my job as a youth work supervisor at a screen-printing shop (during one of the hottest summers in minnesota, ever!)…after a couple of minutes, i pulled to a parking lot alongside highway 100 and talked with the principal…i was excited…to do the job i wanted to do–they were going to pay me $40,000+ and provide health insurance!!!  i thought i had hit the jackpot…heh, heh…that should tell you something about what i was getting paid in those other youth positions:)

since my past jobs often required day, swing, overnight, weekend and holiday shifts, i knew there was one more significant benefit–a good amount of time off to spend with the wife (who’s also a teacher–junior high!!!) and twins (now)…the chance to live a more balanced life!  work hard, yet play hard with the family!  the quality of life factor was/is a big deal!

i was 35 when i became a teacher…it took me a while to find my career (it was a great and strange journey…my friends and family can vouch for that) …sometimes it takes a while to find your place in the world and while i don’t think i’ll be here forever…i do think i finally found my place in the world, the big time (for me, at least)…maybe, a better way to put it would be to say, i finally found my best right place–where i’m at the point of convergence for my vocation…where everything i’ve done (truly) comes into play, where it “all comes toghther”…

and, i’m here…for as long this wild ride lasts…

it should be noted that…while this job holds its share of struggles, there are a lot of rewards that come with it–meeting and influencing young people…being influenced by them–it’s a great gig (most of the time)…so, maybe this kind of work could be your right place, too…

if you’re looking for your best hard time…we can always use a few more good teachers…

i mean, you could be this guy…

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