Seeing as students started back to school yesterday in Charlotte, and I've yet to mention school or my classroom, you can probably figure out that....
I am not going back to school this year.
And you know what? I have no idea when I will go back. So many people ask if I want to go back next fall (2013), and honestly, no, I don't! I've always wanted to be able to stay home with my babies, and luckily, my husband and I have worked hard to make that possible over the first four years of our marriage. I realize that this is not an option that every family has, so I do feel quite blessed that I have the option to stay home with our baby girl (and any future kids we have).
Will I miss teaching? Yes!! There are definitely parts I will miss! I will miss the kids, especially those moments when you see light bulbs go off. But I hope to tutor some over the next few years, so hopefully I'll still get some of those moments. I will miss the people I work with. I will miss the fun of setting up a classroom. I will miss the feeling of when you work hard to plan a lesson and it goes off flawlessly. However, I will not miss the stress that comes with state and district testing. I won't miss hours of grading and planning outside of school. I won't miss the emails from parents treating me like I am not a human being. I've blogged for 4+ years now, and there's so much about my job I haven't shared on my blog. I have had SO many very excellent interactions with parents and families, but I have also had some VERY low lows. And I will not for a second miss the way that some parents have treated me over the years. And the thought of dealing with those sort of stress factors PLUS my own baby at home, it's just not worth it to me.
A lot of people have made comments to me about staying home; they assume it's because I don't make a lot of money and most of my paycheck will go to childcare. While that is true (I make next to nothing, even with my master's degree), it's not the reason I'm staying home. I'm staying home because I want to be with my baby during the day, and I'm lucky enough to have that as an option. We will be making sacrifices to make this possible, but to me, it's so worth it. And teaching will always be there if I want to go back in the future.