Shortly after I moved to Norfolk from the DC suburbs two years ago, I announced that I was never moving again. I've moved a lot and it sucks -- the packing, the U-Haul, the carrying hundreds of boxes of books up multiple flights of stairs, the unpacking, the settling in. . .ugh. Sure, I thought I might someday move out of my apartment into an actual house, but as a military brat, I really like the idea of roots -- of being FROM somewhere. And I love Norfolk, so I decided I would live here forever and ever and ever.
The trouble is that I hate my school and I don't plan to work there once this school year is over. I could go work in some other school district, but that would mean driving out to the suburbs every day, and a big part of why I moved to Norfolk in the first place was because I didn't want to teach (or live) in the suburbs.
And despite the fact that I have long thought of teaching as my true calling, every day I spend at my current school is a day I grow less sure I even want to be a teacher at all. I'm a powerful literacy, Socratic seminar, inquiry-based instruction girl in a standards-based, data-driven instruction, high stakes testing world, and I don't think this NCLB accountability bullshit is going away any time soon. So I keep debating whether I should continue working within a fucked up system to try to do what good I can, or whether I'd be doing more good by refusing to be a part of a system that's completely fucked.
Actually, that dilemma -- now that I see it on virtual paper -- is pretty much a no-brainer for me: there are few things I am more passionate about than the importance of public education, so I just don't see myself getting out of teaching. That would be like moving to Canada and letting right-wing Republicans take over my country. But I'm tired and burned-out and I think I need a break. I just don't know what to do with my break, and I don't know who I'd be if I wasn't a teacher.
I also have no idea where I might like to live, and to complicate matters I seem to be falling -- and falling hard -- for a man who lives in a galaxy far, far away.
So, for perhaps the first time in my life -- certainly for the first time in my ADULT life -- I find myself completely without a plan. I am not a spontaneous, fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kinda girl. I ALWAYS have a plan, and the thought of winging it freaks me out a little. I have never ended a school year without knowing what I'm doing A) for the summer and B) for the following school year, and this is the sort of shit I tend to start thinking about in January or so.
In three months I'll have to renew my lease, and in five months I'll have to sign a contract for the 07-08 school year. But you know what? I don't think I want to do either of those things. I think come June I might just put all my worldy possessions in storage, travel to the galaxy far far away, find some indie bookstore job, and see what happens.
No doubt the universe will unfold as it should. Right?