This week was horrible.
She went back to school on Monday after almost two glorious weeks of winter vacation. Knowing she had loads of work to hand in, plus the cold, and the pains that had been increasing lately, all week she felt like she was walking in a fog.
Work is doing her in. She’s a teacher. She works with fourth graders. After 18 years at this, she expected things to get easier. The total opposite has happened.
It’s not the kids. They’re a pleasure. She still believes in this profession. Teaching fills her, it satisfies, it’s her mark on tomorrow.
But give her a break, please!
This teacher is no good to anyone when they take advantage of her, when they overload her day with so many wasteful, silly, insignificant things to do, when they don’t give her a chance to use the ladies’ room, when she can’t eat a sorry piece of sandwich on her lunch break, when they expect her to write lesson plans and correct papers and fill out reports until 11 at night and during the entire weekend.
This teacher has stopped sleeping for all of the thousands of things she thinks about in the dark.
This week she accepted that the flame is flickering, barely holding on.