A Downside of Teaching

When I was growing up one of the last things I ever wanted to be when I grew up was a teacher. It both was and wasn’t surprising. After all, not only is my mom a teacher, and a wonderful one at that, but a majority of my extended family either are currently teachers, involved in education, or have served as teachers at some point in their lives. It’s practically the family business.

I wanted to do something different.

But, here I am. A teacher. Sure it is the result of a tale that took me from Georgia, USA to Tokyo, Japan, but for most of the past 15 years I’ve been teaching. And really enjoying it.

Sure, I dream of one day making enough through my writing to be able to make that my primary profession, but I’d still miss teaching.

Yes, teaching is a great job, but, like all jobs, it does come with its share of difficulties.

One of those that I am currently learning about is that it can be very difficult to both teach young children and raise young children.

Two things. One, raising kids is hard regardless. I doubt there is a job that is easy to do while also raising kids. Two, I love my kids. Spending time with them is one of my favorite things to do. Even though they are exhausting.

Here is the difficulty, for me at least. As that exhaustion of working and parenting really starts to set in, I start to become aware of how I am drawing on the same mental and spiritual reserves to both do my job and be a parent. I can sometimes feel that we’ll start to run dry. And then, sometimes when I am playing with my kids, there is a flash and suddenly I feel like I’m at work. I want to be home enjoying my family, but it feels just like work.

Again, I love my kids. The last three days I’ve left home before our baby girl wakes up, and it breaks my heart that I couldn’t hold her in the morning.

I do enjoy teaching. But lately I find myself hoping to make it work as an indie author, not just because it is a dream, but in the hope that if I’m not giving care to the kids at school all day long, I’ll have even more in the reserves for my own kids.

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